Old Foghorn
Anchor Brewing Company

Old FoghornOld Foghorn
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Anchor Brewing Company
California, United States
Barleywine - English
Ranked #132
Ranked #14,762
3.92 | pDev: 10.97%
May 05, 2022
Oct 15, 2001
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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3.73 by Mikexw from New York on May 05, 2022
Photo of 86sportster883
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by 86sportster883 from Maryland

Poured out of a Crowler, off a keg with a few years on it. This version of Old Foghorn takes on a light reddish amber hue when held to the sunlight, otherwise it looks caramel brown with orange highlights capped by a dense khaki colored head. The head fades to a thin ring but leaves a prominent lace down the side of my Stone barley wine glass from the early 90’s. Smells like rich dark fruits with a touch of molasses, toffee and caramel. Any floral or citrus hop notes have faded, or have been overpowered by these rich malty notes. Luckily, the taste retains a perfect assertive hop bitterness to stand up to the big roasted, bready, toasty, char, toffee, raisin, prune and dried fig richness, to add some hoppy clove-like spiciness and a hint of phenols. I’m a big fan of English-style barley wines and have never, prior, been all too impressed with fresh versions of Old Foghorn. But I love this aged (3-4 yrs.) version. At 8.2% abv it sets itself apart from many American knockoffs of the style, and delivers a truly delicious fireside sipper. The mouthfeel is medium with a light carbonation that keeps it from feeling slick. It finishes with a drying, yet sticky finish with a lingering hop oil bitterness that keeps you reaching back for another sip. Complex, yet subtle in as all aspects but the glow you will feel at the end of your glass.

Feb 25, 2022
4.46 by BrentMcQuirk from Texas on Jan 18, 2022
4.13 by LesDewitt4beer from Minnesota on Nov 18, 2021
3.83 by DBosco from Massachusetts on Aug 16, 2021
4 by jsgodfrey from Netherlands on Apr 04, 2021
3.89 by Tiernan from Texas on Jan 27, 2021
3.3 by stephenlee93 from England on Dec 19, 2020
Photo of IPAs_for_days_13
3.97/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
by IPAs_for_days_13 from Texas

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
Photo of TooManyGlasses
4.04/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
by TooManyGlasses from Canada (AB)

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
4 by MattDecker from Texas on Aug 09, 2020
Photo of Billsfanbeerlover
4.43/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by Billsfanbeerlover from Massachusetts

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
4.18 by smi69 from New York on May 25, 2020
3.02 by jroof1 from Massachusetts on May 11, 2020
4.08 by Hockey_Fan from Maryland on Apr 04, 2020
3.22 by aatazebeats from Texas on Mar 30, 2020
3.74 by imnodoctorbut from Texas on Mar 19, 2020
4.02 by nruhlig from Minnesota on Mar 11, 2020
Photo of StoutElk_92
4.51/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
by StoutElk_92 from Massachusetts

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
Photo of donspublic
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by donspublic from Texas

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
3.77 by desint from Belgium on Jan 29, 2020
3.96 by Dentist666 from Russian Federation on Jan 29, 2020
3.92 by CraigDeMoss from Kansas on Jan 26, 2020
4.25 by midlifec from Michigan on Dec 29, 2019
Photo of biiru_ojisan
4.29/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25
by biiru_ojisan from Japan

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
Photo of hman43
3.99/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by hman43 from North Carolina

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
Photo of JonnoWillsteed
3.4/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25
by JonnoWillsteed from England

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
Photo of amesetz
4.72/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
by amesetz from California

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
3.82 by Samlover55 from New York on Sep 15, 2019
4.21 by AreSoms from Sweden on Jul 29, 2019
Photo of GuyFawkes
2.75/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75
by GuyFawkes from Illinois

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
3.9 by emerge077 from Illinois on Jun 14, 2019
3.73 by Heftklammer from Massachusetts on May 04, 2019
3.53 by Houborg1 from Denmark on Apr 12, 2019
Photo of Milktoast75
4.6/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by Milktoast75 from Wisconsin

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
4.01 by Budlum from Maryland on Mar 25, 2019
3.96 by NightINgale from Russian Federation on Feb 16, 2019
Photo of jlindros
3.99/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75
by jlindros from Massachusetts

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
4.13 by JTuomi from Finland on Jan 21, 2019
3.25 by Dutchcraftbeergeek from Netherlands on Jan 14, 2019
Old Foghorn from Anchor Brewing Company
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 2057 ratings