Old Foghorn
Anchor Brewing Company

Old FoghornOld Foghorn
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Barleywine - English
Ranked #171
Ranked #11,626
3.94 | pDev: 10.91%
Anchor Brewing Company
California, United States
Very Good
Old FoghornOld Foghorn
Notes: Old Foghorn® is brewed based on historic English barleywine methods. It is highly hopped, fermented with a true top-fermenting ale yeast, carbonated by a natural process called "bunging" to produce champagne-like bubbles, and dry-hopped with additional Cascade hops while it ages in our cellars. Made only from “first wort,” the rich first runnings of an all-malt mash, three mashes are required to produce just one barleywine brew.

ABV varies slightly over the years.
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Reviews: 1,093 | Ratings: 2,052 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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IPAs_for_days_13 from Texas

3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

L: Pours a very cloudy ruby/amber color with a thin beige head.
S: Smells sweet, like the smell of a port wine. Some roasted malt aromas accompanied by a nice earthy hop smell, a little bit of molasses as well.
T: Taste follows the nose, there is a bit of a toffee aftertaste to this brew.
F: Medium-bodied with a thick/chewy feel to it. This beer definitely has a warm finish to it as you consume.
O: Not a bad barleywine by any means, but not as goos as the Sierra Nevada Bigfoot in my opinion.

Oct 09, 2020
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TooManyGlasses from Canada (AB)

4.04/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Well aged bottle - no date but about 4 to 5 years.
Pours a burnt amber with a bit of sediment haze and a finger of pale orange tinged head.
Aroma of dark fruit, toffee, caramel malt, and notes of sherry consistent with the age.
Taste follows with sherry note, raisin, date, molasses, burnt caramel toffee, and a slightly tart cherry bitterness at the finish.
Medium full mouthfeel with an almost oily character and an awareness of the alcohol without truly being boozy; mild but present carbonation, slight bittersweet note lingers.

Sep 20, 2020
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Billsfanbeerlover from Massachusetts

4.43/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great color, aroma, and flavor... Would recommend as an aperitif or while outside fireside. The alcohol at 10.2 ABV is masked well by the flavors.

Jul 10, 2020
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StoutElk_92 from Massachusetts

4.51/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

12oz bottle - 8.2% abv

Pours red amber with a dense creamy light khaki colored foam head. Smells like rich dark and dried fruits, black grape, plum, raisin, prune, fig, blackcurrant, dark molasses, burnt toffee, roasted caramel malts, mild chocolate, caramel, red apple, with floral grapefruity citrus and herbal earthy hops. Tastes dark, roasty, toasty and sweet, like raisin bread toast, some char, hints of chocolate, caramel, burnt toffee, dark molasses, dried and dark fruits, grape, raisin, prune, plum, dried fig, blackcurrant, berry, red apple, phenolic bubblegum, clove spice, with floral grapefruity citrus and herbal earthy hops. Feels light-medium bodied, smooth and slick with moderate low carbonation. Overall a nice barleywine style ale.

Feb 19, 2020
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donspublic from Texas

4.05/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into tulip, good 2 finger light tan head, recedes quickly, little lacing. Amberish/ruby in the glass, slight chill haze. Smells of baked bread, caramel, molasses and malt. Taste of sweet malt, caramel, toffee, molasses, raisin, plum and cherry. Sweet thru the whole sip, with a good firm bitterness on the end. Hides it's ABV well, not hot, highly drinkable, but think I prefer the American version when it comes to Barley Wines. Enjoyable beer

Jan 30, 2020
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biiru_ojisan from Japan

4.29/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured a deep amber with a creamy tan head.

Caramel, burnt sugar, green apple, dried apricot, cherry cordial, marmalade. Not getting much hop aroma. Maybe a touch of something floral.

Toffee, dried fruit leather, cherry cordial, marmalade, burnt sugar. Reminds me of chocolate caramel brittle, but with a bitter finish. Very delicious, wish this had been my Christmas beer. Not catching a lot of obvious hop character. Starts of very sweet, but gets washed away fairly well by the assertive bitterness.

The mouthfeel is fairly heavy bodied and kind of sticky. Carbonation is light. Alcohol warmth is noticeable, but very appropriate for a 9% beer.

Overall, I really enjoy this beer. A great holiday beer to keep an eye out for those yule-time feasts.

Dec 26, 2019
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hman43 from North Carolina

3.99/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: It pours deep amber with slight clouding. It has an off white head with low head retention.

Smell: It has a strong malt and fruit character to start with in the aroma. There are notes of dried cherries and toffee. There are marmalade elements to it with alcohol that is noticeable.

Taste: It is sweet initially with plenty of malt from toffee to some bread. The dried cherry flavors are also strong with some marmalade and low sherry like qualities.

Feel: It is full bodied with a fairly high level of bitterness to it. The alcohol is noticeable but not hot.

Overall, it has strong malt flavors with fruit and is sweet, but not getting into the cloying arena.

Nov 22, 2019
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JonnoWillsteed from England

3.4/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

L- Rich chestnut, clear, thin tan head.
S- Puddingy. Like a British Xmas pudding doused in liquor. Rich and deep baked fruit pudding.
T- Woah, that made me sit up. Mollasses, super-deep liquor-ish malts and roast fruit, and the ABV% clearly kicks in and is on the cusp of what I could wish for and tolerate - it's verging on OTT.
M- Rich, at risk of being sweet but 9.5%ABV in part counters that risk and turns it into a barley-wine blunt instrument instead.
O- Big, deep yet blunt. One to pour in a smaller glass and slowly savour. A reminder that past a certain ABV% all beers seem to become rich/puddingy and perhaps rather OTT. Serve 'Damned Cold!'
12FlOz bottle. Bought in the UK. I can't find a BB on the bottle.

Nov 11, 2019
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amesetz from California

4.72/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Is Barleywine life? I'd say for the most part, yes.
I bought this particular 6-pack back in June with no intentions to crack one open till it got colder out. It was a sultry day out in Chico, CA today but has cooled down to a nice 60 degrees tonight. After three beers I took a gander at the ol' beer fridge and a solo bottle of old foggy was staring me down in the back corner.
Glad I cracked this bad boy open. Using it as a night cap and honestly it could only taste better if I was posted up next to a fire pit. This beer warms you up slightly while delivering big time dried stone fruit and raisin flavor. While I'm a big fan of the bitterness that American Barleywines deliver, Ol Foggy's smooth body never disappoints in times like these.
Sippin this one over the course of 45 minutes with some good music, and I encourage all to do the same!!

Oct 08, 2019
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GuyFawkes from Illinois

2.75/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Unknown vintage; drank 8/22/14 @ the Yarchives.

Red/orange rust color.

Cream head; minimal lace.

Caramel, mild orange citrus & pickle juice nose.

Medium thick mouthfeel.

Caramel flavor with a slight pickle juice note...which emerges as this grows.


Jun 17, 2019
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Milktoast75 from Wisconsin

4.6/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Light copper brown hue. Lingering off white head clings to glass.
First scent of alcohol spiciness and malt amber scent. A bit of fig.
The taste starts and ends the same. But in a good way. Earthy malt amber. Hard to nail this one down. Smooth finish with a slight alcohol warmth.
Smooth, light feel. Almost watery but in no way thin.
The more I drank of this ale the more I enjoyed it. Warmth brings out the full flavors.
Delicious sipper. Recommend it, yes.

Apr 07, 2019
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jlindros from Massachusetts

3.99/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Reviewed as part of BJCP training. 22C American Barleywine.

Pours a nice foamy 1/2 finger off-white head with decent retention, a touch of lacing, nice legs, a clear ruby auburn color, appears with depth through the glass

Nose moderate spicy hops, little earthy as well, malts bring sweet malts, little caramel and little toasted reddish malt, touch of fruity notes, not much "new world" hops, but this was basically the first real American barleywine, so likely a lot more English in nature. Malts getting a little more toasty biscuity as it warms, and mild malt-derived fruits

Taste rich sweet malts, some caramel and hint of toffee, some dark fruits mixed in, nothing in particular, hops come on with moderate to lighter bitterness, with a little earthy spicy hop flavor, fruity esters, no oxidation or aged flavors (this is likely quite fresh), no "new world" hops, fair malty sweetness, smooth very light and hidden alcohol, finishing a little drier but still fairly sweet, a bit more of the spicy hops and bitterness kicking in, bit more alcohol

Mouth is fuller bod, little soft creamy and smooth with very little warming alcohol, not syrupy at all, moderate carbonation

Overall mixed on this one, as it was probably the first real American made barleywine it is of course very close to English version, hopping level maybe a touch more intense than English but malts, hop flavors, and overall perception are a lot more English. However it does help to show the progression into American version, especially with Big Foot coming a few years later.

Feb 16, 2019
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marcbosch from Netherlands

3.99/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: Beautiful dark amber, tan foamy head (but it's a barleywine, so expected). Bottle is classic Anchor style, not the best I've seen, but a lot better than the worst.
Smell: Vanilla (particularly when smelled from the bottle), malt, dried fruit, some alcohol... Probably some Old World hops but don't take me very seriously here. Beautiful.
Taste: whoah, this is one bold beer. Vanilla is the first taste to come, with raisins and plum after. Good malty base, almost plum-cake like, the sort with insane amounts of butter in the dough and rum-soaked raisins (it may be old fashioned but it's solid as hell). Hop bitterness to balance the aftertaste. Rubbing alcohol is definitely present, perhaps a bit of clove. Beer in big capital letters.
Feel: Creamy and chewy, with just enough carbonation to keep things from being too cloying. Still, this is a heavy drink.
Overall: English Barley Wine as it should be. Drink with care, if possible in a comfy chair.

Dec 13, 2018
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Beersnake1 from California

4.27/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from fridge temp. Pours a dark red with surprisingly little head. This bottle was best before March 2018, so it has likely been aged for a couple of years. Nose is amazing. Nice plum, fig, toffee, candy sweetness, and some earthy notes. This is an extremely nice smelling barleywine. Taste is also fantastic. Definitely a good amount of plum, grape, raisin, fig, walnuts, oak, caramel, and a bit of hop bitterness. This is outstanding stuff. The bitter aftertaste is interesting. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and a bit dry. Overall, really nice beer.

Mar 15, 2018
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Quackershnoc from Michigan

3.85/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: murky, muddy brown, but when held to the light it looks fairly clear and a kind of ruby color; thick, creamy tan head

Aroma: dark fruit sweetness; molasses; nice, big grain bill; bready; vanilla

Taste: this is pretty sweet; there is some great dark fruit flavors up front-plum, cherry, fig; very subtle licorice sneaks in there too; moves into some nice malty, bready, grainy flavors in the middle; ends with a touch of hops and a fairly strong grape flavor; aftertaste is fruity, sweet, and wet

Mouthfeel: medium-bodied; slightly juicy; on the thinner side; perfect carbonation

Overall Impression: a nice barleywine; a little too sweet in my opinion, but very smooth and drinkable nonetheless; not the best barleywine around, but certainly worth picking up; I think I’ll cellar the other one for a bit and see what happens to it

From notes taken on 11/7/2013

Mar 11, 2018
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Czequershuus from Minnesota

4.8/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

this beer pours a rich mahogany with a large head. The aroma is gorgeously rich, with notes of honey, banana bread, cinnamon, pine, mint, red malt, brown sugar, toffee, apricot, cumin, chutney, caramelized onion, and creamy tea. The flavor is gorgeously sweet, with notes of of golden raisin, toffee, brown sugar, black tea, caramelized onion, bubblegum, pine, cedar, and dried apricot. The mouthfeel is fairly thick with rather mild, dissipating carbonation. Overall this is a fantastic beer - complex but extremely well harmonized, the individual flavor take a lot of picking out, not because they are indistinct, but because this is really a creation of the whole.

Feb 20, 2018
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bubseymour from Maryland

4.74/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Quite exceptional. This beer takes a while to adapt to but it really is a nicely balanced Barleywine. For English style its not as sweet as some others, but provides a little more hops and a little more of that leathery, old tastes and aroma. Old Foghorn is a perfect name for a beer that gives off that vibe of a hermit sitting in a cold lighthouse at night drinking a big beer like this.

Jan 07, 2018
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JudgeRoughneck from Louisiana

3.61/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

2013 vintage reviewed December 2017.

Aroma - syrupy sweet malt, insanely rich. Plum flesh ester is medium high, low creamy vanilla character, very faint herbal hop, slight hint of paper, not very complex but quite inviting.

Flavor - Fairly refined sherry character dominates, thin molasses malt character is medium high and allows just a touch of herbal\ blackcurrant hop to show through before a papery finish. A little solvent alcohol is discernible but very slight on the palate.

MF - medium-full, pleasantly grippy but undercut by oiliness from alcohol, and general thin oxidized character.

Overall- O2 was not very kind to this 4-5 year old beer and the alcohol still needles it slightly. Overall pretty pleasant to drink but not a memorable aged strong ale.

APP - deep ruby beer with slight haze and a low tan head the persists. Thick legs.

Dec 29, 2017
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chinchill from South Carolina

3.73/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle served in a goblet.
Hazy copper colored body with a decent head and a bit of sediment.
Partially hidden alcohol.
Lightly sweet, Medium-light body and carbonation.

Dec 27, 2017
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WunderLlama from Massachusetts

4.09/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into snifter

Two finger light brown creamy foam cap settles to islands of foam , dark tea appearance

Aroma of dark fruits , raisins, whiff of spiciness

Taste of dark fruit ,

Smooth but I feel the alcohol

Good beer

Dec 23, 2017
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janubio from Spain

3.74/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Amber - red colour, medium off white head with medium retention. Nice lace.
Aroma of raisins, red fruits, chocolate notes, dough,
Medium to full body, creamy nutty rexture. Medium carbonation..Dry finish, hops are noticed.
Taste of red fruits, chocolate, licorice, caramel, nuts, wine.
Good barley, though I'd like them stronger.

Dec 21, 2017
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gandres from Philippines

4.15/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thursday, November 30, 2017 11:18 PM
12 ounce bottle poured to wine glass (no bottled on nor drink by: 7AG marking on bottle) Sight: dark brown, minimal medium tan head, very hazy
Smell: Malty, very fragrant
Taste: low bitterness, low sweetness, very good
Mouthfeel: lively carbonation, creamy, long follow through, sweet, then bitter aftertaste
Overall: Very good beer

Dec 01, 2017
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TheDoctor from Canada (QC)

4.02/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Service: Bottle
Unreadable date code

Pours a clear, dark ruby-walnut with a tan foam rubber head that sticks around well before dropping to a fat, tight little cap. (4.25)

Nutty, spicy, toasty malt layers; wood, white chocolate. (4)

Wall of malt flavors. Wood, earthy with nutty and toasty roast flavors, light chocolate-like sweetness, berries. (4)

A bit warming with a fullish body and medium carbonation slight malt astringency. (4)

A tasty Barleywine as far as I am concerned.
There is a nice assertive malt flavor that is not overpowering (nor is the alcohol—though you can detect it). It has some light fruity and sweet character that offsets any astringency or bitterness and it is generally nice looking and easy drinking. I am not the biggest barleywine/old ale expert, but of the ones that I have liked this one seems like a very approachable, inoffensive take. Perhaps that explains it being “barleywine-style” and having a slightly lower ABV than some. Anyway, it was nice, I'd have it again. (4)

Nov 10, 2017
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Cthulhusquid from Washington

4.25/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Look: One finger white head, brown body.

Smell: See below.

Taste: Caramel, butterscotch pudding, and orange/mild resin from the hops.

Feel: Medium body and carbonation, sweet upfront but mildly dry in the finish. No hint of alcohol, and a hint of hop bitterness rounds it off.

Oct 11, 2017
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josanguapo from Spain

3.52/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From Decervecitas. In Teku glass. Playing Thats Mahjong, then Cannon Defenders. Toffee and figs. Good aroma but in mouth the alcohol is too much noticeable for such an ABV. Bbf this month (my fault). To repeat fresher

Sep 11, 2017
Old Foghorn from Anchor Brewing Company
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 2052 ratings