Good | Alpine Beer Company

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Brewed by:
Alpine Beer Company
California, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 17.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Callenak on 12-05-2006

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Reviews: 17 | Ratings: 83
Photo of rodbeermunch
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Was really amazed at how light (orange) colored this beer was given its strength. Small head around 1/3" on it.

Puts a bunch of toffee, caramel and booze into your nostrils. Sticky, amazing mouthfeel that hides the abv so damn well, its cliche. Tons of hops, but not so noticeable given the hefty body. If you're lucky, take a chance on this one. Really good in small sizes.

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Photo of raiderandbeerfan
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Drinking this one on tap at the Alpine brewpub. A lighter color for something so strong, this is the burnt orange, really small 1/10" head on it, aroma was boozy and warming, all that sticky toffee and caramel.

Similar to other San Diego barleywines, it is big time malt base with big time hoppiness. The heat is apparent on one's breath. Very sticky all over the mouth.

For 17%, just wow, hides that alcohol relative to its strength. Immense mouthfeel stickiness. I wouldn't want an entire bomber of this, but a 4oz pour of something like this is just right.

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Photo of notchucknorris
4.17/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours amber with a frothy, cream-colored head.

S: Honey mixed with a thick rye bread and rich malt aroma. Tons of toasted rye in here.

T: Really tasty sweet honey soaked rye bread. Touch of apricot preserves and marmalade. Very smooth mouthfeel with no real burn from the alcohol at all. A solid barleywine. Definitely not as tasty as Great though.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
4.39/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Type: Draft
Glass: 8-oz. snifter
From: Alpine Beer Company Pub
Price: $6.00
Purchased: Oct. 4, 2014
Consumed: Oct. 4, 2014
Misc.: BA calls Good as 17 percent ABV, but I remember seeing it as 14 percent in the pub. Could just be this year’s batch.

Poured a dark caramel, auburn, semi-clear color with 1-to-2 fingers of khaki cream head when I got it. Light streams of bubbles coming from the bottom of the glass. Good amount of uneven lacing on the sides of the glass. Average-to-above average retention on the top all the way down. (Sight - 4.25)

Smelled rye hops, sweetened iced tea, Citra hops, caramel, toffee, purple grape, light grape juice, plum, sugary candied lemon and some late booziness with big whiffs. (Smell - 4.00)

Wow was my first thought with the taste. Then it was this might be the smoothest barelywine I’ve ever had, not even taking into the account of the high ABV. Pretty close to the smell. Candied sugary lemon, sweetened iced tea, plum, purple grape, caramel, toffee and crisp rye hops. (Taste - 4.50)

Medium body. Oily texture. Medium carbonation. Long, smooth finish. Alcohol is well-hidden. (Feel - 4.75)

Just a fantastic barleywine. So damn smooth. (Overall - 4.50)

4.39 | 97 | A

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.24/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Alpine in April 2013.

Pours out a lighter color for something so stong, deep burnt orange, thin 1/10" head on the top of it. Aroma was warming booze, hops, caramel, the real sticky kind, toffee.

Taste is similar to regular Old Guardian, its hoppy, but it also has a huge malt base and lots of citrus qualities to the taste. You're breathing some heavy alcohol breath while consuming (and after). Carbonation is lively, especially for a barleywine. I still can't get over how sticky icky this is.

Never in a million years would I have believed this beer was 17% abv. Hides it immensely well in the mouthfeel.

Good in small doses, but I can't see me drinking a bomber or pint of this to myself.

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Photo of RaulMondesi
3.7/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Is Raul part of NASA? Because, LIFTOFF!

As this bad boi checks in at 17%, Raul gets fruity notes on the nose and a donkey kick right in the nuts with the taste. It's very smooth, but you know that you are drinking some "Apocalypse Now" type of shit. Like the name says, "good," but not slap yo mama "great."

Glad I tried it, but woo doggy!

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Photo of ehammond1
4.62/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On Tap

Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

A dark, burnt orange in color. Thin, slightly creamy, off-white head. Looks a touch thick and viscous, but that is not surprising for the style and the known ABV. Leaves the glass spotted and oily.

A very hoppy American barleywine. Lots of pungent and toasted citrus zest in the aroma. Sweet tangerine caramel and syrup erupt. There's a bit of a pine and resin character as well. A touch of an alcohol presence. Quite stunning, really.

The flavor is similar to the aroma. This is a candied citrus (zest) monster, along with citrus syrup/caramel and an alcohol warmth, though not nearly as much as I'd expect from a 17% ABV. I truly can't believe the alcohol was that high, but Shawn (of Alpine) certainly didn't deny it. A big, beautiful, aromatic, yet ultimately, and most importantly, incredibly delicious, high ABV barleywine. Hoppy, sweet, aggressive, yet drinkable.

Full in body for the style, slightly sticky. Coating. Excellent.

Fantastic. This is as good as non barrel-aged barleywines can get, but this tastes like it was made for a barrel. It's going to be great!

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Photo of rand
4.46/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2013 batch on tap at the brew pub, poured into tulip glass

A: Brown-apricot in color, small wispy head leaves a fair amount of patchy lacing around the glass.

S: Citrusy, crisp hop essence and honey'd biscuits. Really biscuity and boozy.

T/M: The hop bite noticed in the nose steps up first, but is quickly answered by a huge malt-backbone. Lots of warming booze reveals noted is sweet honey and earthy, floral tea. Doesn't finish as long as you'd think, and its relatively dry at the end.

Barleywines aren't always my favorite style, but the hop-edge in this example adds a lot of drinkability. For the ABV it's pretty amazing.

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Photo of pmarlowe
4.26/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

On tap at the brewpub. Tulip glass.

A: Pours a clear caramel gold/burnt orange with a generous few cm of fine, off-white head. Very good retention and sloppy lacing.

S: Alpine-y citrus and apricot hoppiness coats straight-up light caramel.

T: An intense, almost burnt caramel/toffee character, nice hoppiness (citrus, apricot, floral, stone fruit) reminds you this is a cousin to an Alpine IPA. The fruit notes are nice and interesting. Very mild, grippy bitterness on the finish which is overwhelmed by the moderate residual sugar.

M: Soft, light carbonation. Mouth coating, sticky, full body. Superb. A little alcohol shows through, but I would peg this at like 10% (not 17%) if I had to. Superb body.

O: Rich, well executed in the style, with interesting complexity.. The hops in the nose works really well, but the taste is not quite there with the burnt note.

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Photo of BlackWednesday
4.09/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draught, Toronado. Body is medium amber. Aroma is moderately hoppy (apricot, resin), moderately malty (cookie), with notes of sherry, wood, alcohol. Flavor is heavily sweet, lightly acidic, lightly bitter. Finish is moderately sweet, lightly acidic, moderately bitter. Medium to full body, velvety texture, lively carbonation, moderately alcoholic. A little disjointed/unfocused in the aroma, but rich and balanced well. Doesn’t seem like 17%.

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Photo of MatthewPatthew
3.78/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On Tap at Alpine Beer Company

A: This is a gorgeous, clear, orange. Looks bright and fruity.

S: Like a barleywine should. The sweet, berry-like hoppiness is really powerful. Just a hint of alcohol gets through.

T: Bright, with that beautiful flavor you only get from beers with the combination of this much malt and hops. A little sweeter than some (eg. Old Guardian), but still within an appropriate balance.

M: Just a hint of alcohol, medium bodied.

D: Very drinkable.

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Photo of WeisGuy
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at O'Brien's

a - deep copper color with burgundy, minimal head with little retention or lacing, I guess to be expected from a 17% brew

s - big brown sugar and caramel aroma, some boozy bourbon notes present, light orange marmalade, some smokiness

t - orange citrus, caramel and brown sugar up front, more caramel with a light citrus bitterness on the midpalate, light bitterness, almost tannic, on the finish, but the predominant flavors are once again brown sugar and caramel, light oak and smoky flavors as well

m - full-bodied with light carbonation, semi-sweet finish with strong alcohol warming on the palate, the mouthfeel really works with this beer

d - surprisingly drinkable for the abv, the sweetness is restrained enough to keep it from being cloying, the alcohol is certainly noticeable but not overwhelming

Really great barleywine and a wonderful addition to the Alpine lineup. These guys have really emerged as a preeminent craft brewery.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


Dark orange with a small off white head. The nose is of caramel, toffee, and candied citrus, mostly grapefruit and orange. The flavor is moderately sweet toffee and caramel with that same candied grapefruit I detect in the nose. Alcohol is present but nicely integrated. The finish is sweet with lingering citrus and booze. The mouthfeel is full, sticky, and creamy and carbonation is low. With Good as a base beer, it's no wonder that Great is just that. Among the best American Barleywines I've tried. Delicious.

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Photo of radshoesbro
4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On cask at Hamilton's on Boxing Day!

Pours a deep cloudy red with no lace. Vigerous swirling leads to nothing. Perfectly fine for a cask ale.

Smells of candied popcorn, walnuts, and a sweet pungent malt character. The toffee notes one would get off Great (the barrel aged version) are present, but it's clear the barrel really brings that out a bit more. The toffee has a nice subdued characteristic that doesn't immediatley jump out at you.

Tastes fucking beautiful! This is the best barleywine I've had next to Stonewall. It's got a beautiful toffee caramel and after a few minutes of swallowing a delicious caramel popcorn comes out!!

I really wish Alpine had bottled this so that people could do side by sides, but oh well.

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Photo of d0ggnate
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On cask at Hamiltons on Christmas Eve

Appears brown/amber and clear when held to light. A single finger white head remains atop my glass.

Heavy malt on the nose. More notes of molasses and candied sugars. Taste is sweet, but finishes slightly bitter. Just the right amount of "boozy". Rich and velvet smooth on the mouthfeel.

Glad to have had the opportunity to try this one. Great presentation on cask.

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Photo of hopdog
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap @ the San Diego Strong Ale Fest.

Poured a medium to dark, hazy golden color with an averaged sized head. Aromas and tastes of brown sugar, malts, and fruits. Some caramel. Sweet. Wow, 17% - I wouldn't have guessed that at all. This was my last tasting on Day 1 and picked a very good beer to close it with!

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Photo of Callenak
4.51/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled at the Pizza Port Strong Ale Fest this past weekend. It was part of the VIP beers and it was just called Alpine Good Barleywine. Can't find anything on their website about it.

Pours a deep and dark amber with a slight head. A little on the murky side. Carbonation seems slight but present.

The nose is what sold me on this beer. I've never smelled a beer like this. The closest way I can describe it is it smells like when you walk into a jamba juice. Just a mixture of fresh blended fruit. Strange I know but it was uncanny. I doubt any real fruit was used it the BW, but god does it smell like it. Big citrus bouquet, plenty of great continental hops no doubt. But the smell, it's mesmerizing. Think I smelled this beer longer than I drank it, and at 17% there is no doubt I took my time.

Taste was not a let down. The strong fruit nose didn't transcend to the taste. Pick up on some of the grapefruit from the hops. A nice taste of vanilla and brown sugar. A hint of chocolate and caramel. You would think that there would be a major alcohol burn with this one if it really is 17%, but it's very mellow. Secondary to the other taste. I can only imagine it was aged for quite a while (cask, barrel?).

We kept talking about if we had a favorite beer from the Strong Ale fest, I kept coming back to this one. I'm very glad it was the second beer I had so I could fully enjoy. I wish I would have know the ABV before I put down two or three of these monsters though. Nevertheless, in a day of amazing beer this one really stood out. I would kill for some more.

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Good from Alpine Beer Company
4.3 out of 5 based on 83 ratings.
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