Great | Alpine Beer Company

BA SCORE
97
world-class
668 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
GreatGreat
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company
California, United States
alpinebeerco.com

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 14.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
The base of this beer was available at a couple of festivals as a barleywine named "Good". The remainder of the batch spent several months aging in fresh Jack Daniels barrels and became "Great".

Added by xlperro on 03-01-2005

BEER STATS
Ratings:
668
Reviews:
163
Avg:
4.43
pDev:
8.8%
 
 
Wants:
1,443
Gots:
85
For Trade:
7
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 668 |  Reviews: 163
Photo of acurtis
3.75/5  rDev -15.3%

Photo of Texasfan549
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of GRG1313
4/5  rDev -9.7%

Photo of jaydoc
4.19/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.27/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle pour at Woodshop 8 held at The Hermosillo in Los Angeles, CA.

2013 vintage.

Pours a hazy dark brown with a foamy beige head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, caramel, toffee, bourbon, and wood aromas. Taste is much the same with caramel and toffee syrup and bourbon flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of woody bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with a really smooth bourbon presence in the flavor that makes this one very easy to drink.

 665 characters

Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev -9.7%

Photo of kjkinsey
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -9.7%

Photo of Knapp85
4.05/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks again to jzeilinger for opening this one with me. This poured out as a nice hazy brown color. The head comes and goes rather quickly. No real retention or lacing on this one. The beer smells sweet like caramel with a bit of barrel aging on the nose. The hops are a bit hidden on this. The taste of the beer is also sweet with a subtle bitterness in the finish, flavors of caramel and toffee in there with a minimal bitterness. I was hoping to get more of the JD barrel flavors from this but wasn't able too. The mouthfeel is smooth, very dangerous because it's easy to drink. Overall it's a good brew, really happy I got to try it.

 638 characters

Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.35/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
5/5  rDev +12.9%

Photo of oline73
4.75/5  rDev +7.2%

Photo of SocalKicks
4.75/5  rDev +7.2%

Photo of largadeer
4.84/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2009 vintage on tap at Alpine. Caramel coloered with a small head that recedes to a thin crown. Aroma is amazing, rich caramelized malts wrapped in bourbon, oak and vanilla. Wonderfully oxidized, sherry like with a hint of savoriness. The palate is massively malty and rich. Flavors of butterscotch and bourbon are balanced by tannic oak. Oxidation lends notes of sherry and faint soy sauce. Full, almost syrupy body, yet this is surprisingly easy to drink and very balanced. This was very good from the bottle, but it's outstanding on tap. There's virtually no trace of alcohol, and the balance between beer and barrel is impeccable.

 634 characters

Photo of zestar
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of mothman
4.59/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into old guardian snifter.

Pours hardly any head. However there is a ring of foam. Very slight lace. Color is a mahogany brown copper.

Aroma: Massive bourbon oak. Vanilla with a very nice fall flavored spice. The oak is dead on. Tons of malt; caramel and toffee flavors. Burnt sugar. Very solid.

Taste: Rich and malty. Toffee and caramel. Bourbon, oak, and vanilla. Very warm. Burnt sugar with some sweet notes. This beer has a very slight amount of alcohol showing for the high abv. Tons of malt with little hop showing. Great bourbon flavors blending this beer together.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and rich. The carbonation is a little lower, but it really works well with this beer. It has a fairly large body. It is ends sweet and malty, relatively clean. After discussion with my homie Pete dog, I notice the bitterness of the hops. I am glad he picked up on that as it is an American Bwine.

Overall, a very solid bwine. It is big, smooth, and drinkable. Lots of flavor and the bourbon barrels really tied the beer together to make it complex, yet drinkable. I am glad I had a chance to try this one. Very solid.

 1,121 characters

Photo of olradetbalder
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of Thorpe429
4.69/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Azurelimits for breaking this out at a recent tasting.

A: Pours a fairly-bright dirty copper with a tiny whisp of a tan head.

S: Very rich bourbon alongside some caramel, toffee, sweet malts, and alcohol (although not nearly as much as would be expected from a brew of this alcohol level).

T: Lots going on with the bourbon beautifully complementing the sweet maltiness of the base beer. Some nice woodiness as well as loads of caramel.

M: Medium body with a low level of carbonation and moderate booziness.

D: Very delicious. Not extremely complex, but just done so incredibly well.

 602 characters

Photo of Kurmaraja
4.75/5  rDev +7.2%

Photo of Kegatron
4.37/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a snifter. Big thanks to srandycarter for a bottle of this in trade.

Pours a deep amber/near brown color, with a finger of light tan foamy head. This fizzles down pretty readily, with just a thin looking retention around the edges, but this still leaves a decent little amount of spotty lace down the sides of the glass. Yeah, I would say that the Bourbon and Barleywine have married each other quite nicely in the aroma. I'm getting caramel, butterscotch, burnt molasses, a little bit of plum and fig, and sweet, sweet, notes of vanilla. This is mostly sticky sweet in the nose but I'm also picking up some underlying roast, smoke, and even a touch of char from the barrel. Some lighter but still bright smelling green tannic character hangs on the edges of this, actually helping balance out some of the sweeter tones. There is some beefy warmth present as well but it mostly serves to add some thickness to the flavors.

The taste is pretty much on the same page as the aroma. Notes of caramel, toffee, smoky molasses, some dark cherries and plums (which REALLY emerges as this warms), and an underpinning of char and roast all at the forefront here. Some hops do tickle the rear of the profile but what absolutely makes this; is the silky sweet flush of butterscotch and vanilla flavors across the backend, where in mingles with some deep woody dryness. The mouthfeel is full, thick, chewy, and viscous, just coating the tongue and lips with warm sticky liquid. Speaking of the warmth, that is exactly the way that this stays. Warm but never overly hot, which is very hard to believe with a 14% ABV on this. Pretty spectacular feel, with this coming off much more like it's in the 10% range.

This was some pretty impressive stuff. Wonderful melding of flavors here between the beer & barrel; and the feel and drinkibility on this were pretty awesome for the size. I'd love to tuck a few more of these away for cellaring, as this is one that's only going to get even better with time.

 2,010 characters

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.6/5  rDev +3.8%

Photo of Rifugium
4.35/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of XmnwildX12
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of mendvicdog
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Great from Alpine Beer Company
4.43 out of 5 based on 668 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.