Woodford Reserve Barrel Aged Mad Hatter | New Holland Brewing Company

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10 Ratings

Brewed by:
New Holland Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): not listed

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by khiasmus on 09-17-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 10 |  Reviews: 10
Photo of greggerino
4.42/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Golden amber color with a moderate clean, white head. After a few minutes there was some head retention and a slight amount of lacing.

S: Bourbon, oak, vanilla, and hops.

T: The hops hit first, then subtle oak and vanilla flavors present. Finishes with a woody oak, earthy bitterness.

F: Medium mouth feel, rich flavors, not much carbonation.

D: A very easy to drink and enjoyable beer. A great example of the IPA style, though some may find it slightly less drinkable than a standard IPA due to the oak aging.

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Photo of danielharper
4.34/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer tasted during trip to the brewery this autumn. (Maybe September?) Notes transcribed verbatim.

A: Red-orange body, thin white head.

S: Like a whiskey, strong with bourbon barrels. Sweet malt underneath. Hops very muted, but present way down.

T: Again, very woody with a mild hop bite. Sweet with caramel malt.

M: Moderate body, low carbonation, high hops.

D: Very drinkable. Makes me want a whiskey.

(My present-moment recollection of the beer is that it tasted a lot like bourbon whiskey smells: very rich with oak, a nice body, very very smooth. The above notes are a bit bare-bones, but this is definitely a beer worth trying if you have it available to you.)

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Photo of Jamesthebrit
4.11/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Amber brown oaky appearance. It looks like it gained something from being aged. A very unique color. The head retention is epic.
S: Hunt of Cinnamon and some very subtle citrus but that's where it stops.
T: When it's cold there isn't much to it other than it's super smooth. As it warms some sourness and citrus hints appear while staying very smooth. I like it.
M: Perfect. Carbonation is perfect, lingering citrus hints. Absolutely amazing.

Overall I was quite weirded out by this beer. It brought a lot of different elements to the table and most of them were executed very well. I was surprised to find out this was an IPA at one point. I would recommend this for sure.

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Photo of khiasmus
4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A light chill-haze clouds the perfect clarity of the brisk evening, a constant stream of bubbles jettisoning up to meet the cap of white. A couple fingers, just a bit, dappling the walls as it recedes.
A wave of hopping on the nose, clean and refreshing, American hops, cascade, pine-resin. Aroma is that of a clean IPA at first, then gains complexity as it warms. Mmm... a vanilla birthday-cake for you tonight, yet another year older, none the wiser... Some notes of bourbon and oak, and I suppose it's going to be a terrific evening!
The flavours are there, those of the IPA, but then a rich malting that is accentuated by vanilla and bourbon notes, a terrific dark night to enjoy one another's company and make merry... The notes of bitterness finishing out the flavour, but still a lingering vanilla-bean-biscuit note, almost that of shortbread.
Rather a bit thin and light, time for more cake, you mustn't lose your stoutness, you know. Carbonation is high and we squirt champagne in the air later in the evening... things have gotten a bit rowdy. At least the finish is clean and dry.
This is a very enjoyable experience and highly recommended. The bourbon barrel aging adds a specific complexity and vanillins abound, and makes a much more interesting beer than Mad Hatter itself. Cheers! Enjoy your night ladies and gents!

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Photo of portia99
4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler received in trade with beernerd81. Thanks a lot for this one Ben! Poured into a Bruery tulip.

A - Pours a hazy pale orange with a finger of sticky cream colored head. Decent head retention...dies down leaving a bunch of thick lacing on the sides of the glass.

S - Interesting, sweet, woody, a bit of citrus. Crisp, earthy hops...a bit fruity. There is something there that I can't identify...driving me crazy (the 2 people I'm sharing with are having the same experience).

T - Taste mirrors the aroma exactly. Crisply bitter, not a hint of sweetness. Earthy, a bit spicy...maybe a touch "skunky", woody, maybe a bit minty, difficult to describe...definitely liking this, but there are some unidentifiable flavors there that are - 1) driving me crazy trying to identify and 2) fairly unique.

M - Light to medium body...medium carbonation. Very dry - leaves a major, lingering bitterness behind, that is pleasant and fairly unique.

D - Quite sharply bitter...definitely not one of those perfectly balanced beers. Quite enjoyable and I'm looking forward to a second glass...not a tremendously drinkable IPA, but good overall.

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Photo of Nesued
3.97/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Obtained via "Rare Keg Thursday" at the Piney Grove, Green's in Columbia, SC. Nice program.

Appearance - Deep orange in color, light carbonation adds to the one-finger head that formed upon pour. Clear, with good head retention as the off-white head folds into a thick ring and uniform cover.

Smell - I brought out my bottle of Woodford Reserve to evaluate the influence. The underlying aroma of the Mad Hatter was not far off from the Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey. The mellow wood and vanilla tones are there, although obviously several magnitudes more subdued. This does mellow the expected IPA hop pine/grapefruit nose and actually creates a nice marriage. Inviting, and also already presenting very high expectations.

Taste - I let this warm for at least 15 minutes before sampling. I feel right out of the fridge is too shocking to both the beer, and your tastebuds. When drinking an IPA, you are already going to be "shocked" so warming it allows for more of the overall profile to come through (In my opinion). My first impressions are that the barrel-aging did indeed add a lot to this offering. However, not having the Mad Hatter, I was more comparing this to other AIPAs, than the profile of the Hatter. What I smelled, is what I taste. Rich vanilla notes, a woody depth, caramel and a resin hop presence. The malt backbone is difficult to find, beyond a bit on the opening. The middle and finish are a bit thin.

Mouthfeel - Light carbonation adds to the mouthfeel to give it a bit of body. Not much more to speak about, other than a crisp finish.

Drinkability - The Mad Hatter is listed at about 5.25%, so this "aged" offering can't be far off. The contribution of the Woodford barrels does both add depth and mellows the typical IPA profile. For those who shy away from big IPAs, this may be something to your liking. Would have liked a bit more "legs" on this one, to go beyond the initial strong opening.

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Photo of BS68280
3.92/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On growler thanks to another great rare beer thursday at Green's. Poured into my trusty DFH signature glass.

A: Deep orange amber and hazy. About a half inch of off white head. Almost near the bottom of the glass now, and there lacing present with a little head staying around still.

S: A citrusy hop smell first off, which is eased by the bourbon barrel. The barrel aging adds more of vanilla and slightly oaky smell than a boozy bourbon like i have had with some barrel aged beers.

T: The taste is very in line with the smell. Some good citrusy hops up front, which is very much softened from the characteristics of the barrel. The vanilla flavor follows the hops and stays there until the hops come back around for a bitter finish.

M: Medium body and carbonation. Good but nothing really stands out.

D: I could definately have a few, not sure if i will drink the whole growler like i have a couple times.

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Photo of adamette
3.45/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Review from notes. Enjoyed by me on tap 12 23 09 into a clean, clear pint glass with my brother in law Steven and my wife at Fat Head's brewpub in North Olmsted, Ohio.

A Somewhat cloudy light brown body under a creamy IPA like head. A little basic. 3.5

S Some soft, earth oak in front of the expected hops of Mad Hatter. 3.5

T Well this is Mad Hatter softened by the oak barrels. I am not convinced that these tastes go well together but it is nothing if not interesting. This beer really had me sipping, thinking, and coming back for more to get my mind around it. The hops are muted compared to regular Mad Hatter and that effect I like but it is just a little odd. 3.5

M Medium feel with the oak and hops increasing the feel. 4.0

D Only fair. The pint was finished but it was a little bit of a chore. I just think that the bitter, sharp hops next to the softening of the oak barrels was strange. 3.0

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Photo of dmamiano
3.38/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

nice pour into a tulip glass
hazy with a brassy "hue" and a nice soft creamy head.
this one had the domiating chracteristics of the barrel for sure. hoppiness seemed to loose the battle which dissapointed me a bit.
Oak, notes of whisky and malts dominated.
I think some beers are better without the barrel...this may be one

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Photo of drpimento
3.11/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

uh, well, it's good -- I guess. I think. Odd duck, for sure. Trying to decide if these flavs go together and my gut feeling is basically they don't, not really. Good effort, though. For sure. Poured with a decent off white head and a little lace. Color is a nice clear, medium amber. Nose is hoppy and a hint of bourbon with vanilla and some citrus. Also some yeast. The vanilla/bourbon/hop thing doesn't seem to work for me. A mild sort of clash. Body is good and so is carbonation. A little boozy at the end. Technically very well done.

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Woodford Reserve Barrel Aged Mad Hatter from New Holland Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.88 out of 5 with 10 ratings
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