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LongShot Mile High Barley Wine Ale | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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LongShot Mile High Barley Wine AleLongShot Mile High Barley Wine Ale
Very Good
263 Ratings
LongShot Mile High Barley Wine AleLongShot Mile High Barley Wine Ale

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.80%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by smcolw on 04-03-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 263 |  Reviews: 231
Photo of richbrew
5/5  rDev +29.2%

Photo of tzieser
5/5  rDev +29.2%

Photo of jlenik
5/5  rDev +29.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Ever since I was lucky enough to try last years Longshot winners I was looking forward to this years and I must say that, overall, this years blows last years out of the water. But they are all good so I don't care. This review is for the Barleywine only so let's get a-crackin'.

A: Pretty much what you can come to expect from a barleywine. Amber and ruby colors come through mostly. The head was fairly minimal but it was there and persisted long enough for me to enjoy.

S: Hops and a lot of them. As I drank it the malty sweetness and alcohol become more prevalent.

T: This is probably the fifth one of these I've tried and I love it. Ever since I first tried it, I immediately said that this was one of the better tasting barleywines I've tried and I have not changed my opinion since. While very hoppy in smell, it is much more balanced in taste. That's not to say that the hop presence isn't noticeable but it doesn't have that punch of hops that I got from other breweries barleywines (Sierra Nevada, Dogfish Head, Stone). There's a combination of sweetness and hoppyness that I cannot express in words other than saying "balanced". As it warms up to room temperature it gets even better. A lovely experience over all.

M: It honestly feels like I'm drinking a a Pale Ale at first then the strength of the barleywine shines forth. Not thick on the tongue.

D: Very drinkable. Alcohol presence not too noticeable. This isn't one of the strongest barleywines out there but still. I wish this came in six packs.

summary: I wish the Longshots were offered all year long in six-packs but alas I must continue to buy this mixed-pack. I will eventually review the other beers in this pack but I'll say right here in this review that I enjoyed all three offerings a lot and will be putting a bunch of the Old Ale and this Barleywine away to try next years.

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Photo of Sinewave
5/5  rDev +29.2%

Photo of nobjon
4.85/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

super suprised to have a sam i actually like ,,, someone just gave me one bottle so i must find more, i enjoy barley wine ale , blithering by weyerbacher, bigfoot by seirra nevada and my all time favorite victory s old horizontal--- this beer is exactly,,EXACTLY like old horizontal, coloir taste even carbonation if you like horizontal get this stuff

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Photo of vette2006c5r
4.56/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Sam Adams LongShot Mile High Barley Wine, poured a dark amber color, with a decent size head. It smelt of hops, and maybe carmel. It had a great taste, it was hopy but not over powerfull, it was rich and flavorfull. It was heaveir but rather easy to drink, I could deffently drink more then one. Overall fantastic beer, its a real shame its a limited production.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle into a snifter.

Pours a deep clear amber, topped with 1 ½ fingers of tight looking light mocha head. This just looks beautiful sitting here in the glass. This retains with a smaller, yet still rich ½ finger, leaving back creamy lacing that rings the sides of the glass with spotty foam. The aroma smells herbal and leafy, which sits on top of ripe dark fruit, sweet alcohol, and doughy grains. Man, this just has a nice power and depth to the nose. This is nice!

The taste is a rich and smooth mix of dark fruit (I’m picking up a lot of cherries), sugary breads, and a big alcohol sweetness. The finish on this is flavorful and satisfying, with lingering notes of roast, herbal citric hops, and dry spice. The mouthfeel is full bodied, with a thick and chewy creaminess in the mouth. That large ABV gives the body a sticky wet warmth but this never becomes stinging at the least.

Wow, I was a bit shocked at how much I ended up liking this and while some of that American hop profile had been diminished (I had this with about 8 months or so on the bottle in Jan. ’10), this just showed a great use of that high gravity here, with a bold warm spiciness that enhanced both the body and flavors on this. I’m regretting not picking up more of these to cellar, as I would have loved to have seen how this once would continue to develop. I’m not sure exactly how close they got this to the original award winning beer here but I really enjoyed this!

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Photo of mfunk9786
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A shockingly great beer from the Samuel Adams LongShot variety pack (worth noting - this was purchased at an amazingly reasonable price from State Line Liquors in Elkton, MD - $7.99 for the sixer!)

A: Lighter than most barleywines, this one is a dark orange with barely a finger of head. Though clearly not completely filtered, it is a lot more see-thru than a lot of Barleywines, and quite the sight to behold. Still, it lacks the rich visual character that a lot of Barleywines have down pat.

S: Smells of malt, malt, malt. There are some hops on the nose, but as I'll explain in more detail later, this beer reminds me more of Weyerbacher's Blithering Idiot more than any other American Barleywine - it has a lot of malt character with surprisingly restrained hoppiness, which is (to me) the perfect balance for a Barleywine (without becoming a full-head-of-steam Strong Ale).

T: The taste is of sweet malt with a touch of surprisingly fresh and citrusy hops. I don't mean to use the adverb "surprisingly" so often, as I am someone who has a lot of respect for the Samuel Adams brewery and their ability to balance craft brewing with big business - but it's still refreshing to taste nice fresh hops along with their signature "how do they do that?" malts that take your tongue on a journey that would make even Founders jealous. But on that note - this beer started as a homebrew, and the gentleman behind it must have had more of a malty English Barleywine style in mind. Dark fruit and brown sugar are prominent, followed by a taste that would go perfectly with a bowl of - hey! - Boston baked beans. A great beer that tastes darker than it looks.

M: As described above, the mouthfeel is deceptively dark and mysterious. I also noticed a far lower alcohol burn on the tongue than in the head - this brew is nearly 10% alcohol but certainly doesn't taste it - hell, more than any other Barleywine I've ever sampled, I could see myself mowing the lawn and drinking this - which goes very well with Sam Adams' Macro/Micro motif.

D: Probably the best Drinkability rating I'd give a beer of this style - I could drink two or three bottles of this, it tastes light and malty rather than overly bitter or boozy.

Seek out this year's LongShot pack - this brew may surprise you. I like the Old Ben as I'll explain in a later review - but this beer is better than advertised and certainly the star of the pack, even though Barleywines are part of a crowded marketplace!

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Photo of tubacharlie
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a brandy snifter, a small head emerges, then quickly recedes to a foam ring with some floating lace in the middle. It covers an exceedingly clear, deep brown brew with a reddish-copper tinge.

A deep sniff reveals the high alcohol content with a presence of some caramel malt and molasses overtones. Essence of toasted barley malt is the dominant flavor, expanding throughout the mouth as the esters evaporate off the tongue. Smooth and effervescent in the mouth, a complex, raisin and roast chestnut mix of influences hangs on the back of the palate as the elixir dissipates.

True to the barley wine style, this is a well done example.

Sampled on 4-10-10

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Photo of mwa423
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a deep ruby brown/red that is clear enough to read through. Three fingers of off white head last through the first few sips and leaves a good lacing.

S - Malty and sweet along with a hint of what smells like wheat and orange zest to smooth out the flavor.

T - Taste is very heavy in the malt at first, a steely hop hits the tongue hard. The aftertaste is very sweet and is far different than

M/D - The body is very full and creamy, other than the thickness and the alcoholic burn, this is an impressively drinkable beer.

So far, I think this is the best of the longshots this year.

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Photo of ssjkyle
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of BeerImmediately
4.48/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into snifter at about 55 degrees.

Pours with a pretty orange/amber color, and 1F of off-white head, which hangs out forever as a permafilm, with a strong edge. Touch of visible carbonation. Nice lacing.

Aromas of 7-Up, ginger spice, rich fruits - especially cherries, and maple syrup. Very sweet overall, and quite inviting.

Rich mouthfeel, with some nice bittering hops to offset the overall sweet flavors. Barley, maple syrup, allspice, orange peel... there's a lot going on in there - and it is enjoyable. Decent bite in the afterglow. Smooth overall, though, for the style.

I really liked the drinkability on this one. It's not overly harsh or bitter, as many barleywines, and if you're a fan of a little sweeter profile, you'll apppreciate this.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
4.45/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

One of favorite styles from one of my favorite breweries.... this is destined to end well. Pours a nice reddish-brown color, decent size head to it.... tons of lacing on the glass. Dark fruit aroma to it. Taste is more towards the full-bodied side, great mouthfeel. Some great hoppiness in this one, but still well balanced. A slight tinge of alcohol on the back end but really a lot less than I was expecting... it's scary how smooth this is for being 9.6% ABV. GREAT beer... best of the Longshot pack (although all are above average), will definitely be buying another 6'er so I can get two more of these guys,

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Photo of Metalmonk
4.4/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Great big head of tan cream sits on top, although at 9.8% it's no surprise that it doesn't stand up long. Leaves dots of lace. Color is that scorched and burnt candy-apple red that your typical American barleywine usually sports.

Big rush of toffee, molasses, cherry, vanilla, grapefruit rind and alcohol into the nostrils, each component in equal measure. Very Bigfoot-ish, which I absolutely welcome in any barleywine that's not Bigfoot.

Just like the nose, the flavor is toffee, molasses, cherry, vanilla, citrus rind and alcohol. Toss in some maple syrup and turn it all up a notch, and you have one completely wonderful barleywine. Hops show up most dominantly in the finish, paired up nicely with a gooey malty caramel/toffee base. Lotsa hops, even more lotsa malt. An American-style barleywine, big, bold and boisterous, yet possessing plenty of class and clearly made with care.

Super-creamy in the mouth, rounded, smooth, velvety...just enough bubble to prop up the texture a bit. Ultimately, this is how a barleywine should feel. Yeah, this one fires on all cylinders.

Huh. Like the Old Ben's Ale from the Longshot series, this impressed me much more the second time around, days after my first try. Who knows why. I do know I'll be wanting more of each before this year's Longshot series disappears. Cheers to Ben Miller (he created this bad boy).

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Photo of MrHurmateeowish
4.37/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle purchased as part of this year's mixed sixer purchased at McKinnon's. Pours a crystal-clear red body with nearly an inch of light tan head. Aroma reeks of American hops - citrus, grapefruit, lemon, and pith with a fair bit of caramel-toffee malt to back it up. American hops immediately assault the palate, with lemon, orange, grapefruit, and slight hints of mint and herb, with chocolate, caramel, toffee, and slight hints of toast coming from the malt. Rich and full-bodied with moderate carbonation, and while it's a sipper, it's a fast sipper. Wow, this is in your face at all fronts. Tastes amazing, and the flavors mesh well and compliment each other. A great American barleywine to be sure, and one of the best I've tried of the style.

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Photo of Ghenna
4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pleasant amber with 1 fat finger of off white foam.

My first impression of the beers nose is of piny hops, though there is a rich almost buttery malt smell behind the hops that I imagine would become more noticeable as the beer warms to room temperature.

My initial impression of the beer's taste is that it reminds me a bit of bigfoot, as far is it being a more hoppy BW (as opposed to lagunitas or stone's). So there a almost creamy hop/malt taste initially, with a bit of bitter hop residue lingering on the tongue. As the beer warms, the malt character starts to shine more, as does dark fruit.

All told, this is a good beer. Sam Adams really gets back to its roots with this series of beers. I've had the big ale and this and have been terribly pleased, and would happily continue to buy these if they made them regular additions to their lineup.

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a clear brown color with reddish tints. The head is half an inch in height, and recedes slowly into a nice cap of lacing. The aroma is of caramel, dark fruit, citrus, and a hint of peat. The taste is maltier than the aroma which I like a lot. There are some nice caramel, toffee, and burnt malt notes, and the alcohol is very well integrated. The mouthfeel is full bodied with a silky texture, and appropriately low carbonation. Overall, this is a very nice beer that I would happily drink again.

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Photo of Brad007
4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a mild brown color with a two-finger head into my glass. Looks about right for the style.

Aroma is full of citrusy hops that seem to dominate the nose as they would within this style.

Taste once again shows what to expect with grassy, citrusy hops starting off this beer, followed by a caramel-like essence in the malt. Not too sweet. More hoppy than anything.

Mouthfeel is full of lingering hops and caramel-like malt that linger. Nothing out of the ordinary.

It's certainly to style but unlike some other examples I've had, the hops do not overpower and there isn't an abundance of alcohol heat. Very drinkable for the ABV.

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Photo of Kallessin
4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours very clear deep amber-brown with a very full creamy light tan head. Very nice lacing as the foam settles. Plenty of bubbles floating up through it.

Has a very sweet malty caramel aroma with some grainy cereal aromas with subtle peppery spiciness and some earthy citrusy hops.

Huge malty flavor, mainly caramel and very sweet. Some peppery alcohol, some raisins and assorted dark fruit and a nice citrus spiciness in the background. This fades to brown bread and a healthy amount of herbal/earthy hops. Very flavorful.

Full bodied and creamy with a moderate amount of carbonation. It's a little warming and sticky at first, then much drier on the finish.

A really great beer. Rich and flavorful - very well made all around. Perfect sipper to relax with.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.32/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

deep dark brown with a small tan head. Very thick looking with a somewhat reddish tint to it. Lots of side glass lace as well as a rich foamy layer left on top. The smell was very full, lots of roasted malts and caramel with an odd sort of sweet hoppiness melded into the back end of it. The feel was great, very full and creamy with a great residual smoothness to it. Huge sweet caramel and sugar flavor that was folded over with hints of chocolate and even a roasted coffee. This was a very fine strong ale,

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Photo of greengorilla
4.32/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured this from a 12 ounce bottle into a goblet. It is a clear amber brown color with a creamy one finger thick beige head.

It smells really good. I can pick up the floral hops, some citris scent, and a bready scent.

It tastes pretty darn good too. I can't really taste very much of that citris that I smell, but it has a good balance of malt and hops.

The mouthfeel is smooth with low carbonation.

It is very drinkable. I really enjoyed this beer. I bought it in a six pack sampler, so I only have one more left. If I find it in a six pack, I will definitely buy it again.

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Photo of philbe311
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Three plus fingers worth of cascading pale khaki head that is equal parts frothy and creamy with a slightly rocky top... Excellent retention... A fully translucent, slightly glowing, reddish caramel color... Some mildly sluggish carbonation rises throughout... Rich foam clings to the sides of the glass...

S - Mostly malt forward, but with a touch of hoppiness... Toffee... Caramel... Weak grape juice... A touch of piney hops... A hint of sweet citrus...

T - Mild complexity and wonderful balance that is true to the nose... Sweet malts to start... A touch of sweet citrus... A vague piney presence lies underneath... Then more caramel, toffee, raisins, and other dark fruits... Very nice...

M - Medium to full bodied... Exceedingly smooth... Velvety... Creamy... Ultra rich... Very little in the way of carbonation... Even and consistent... Delicate yet assertive...

D - This is a very drinkable Barleywine that reminds me of an Old Ruffian Jr (this is a good thing)... Nice balance of malt and hops that is not overpowering in anyway... Possible my favorite Long Shot beer... Ben Miller should be quite proud of this lovely creation...

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Photo of MrHungryMonkey
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nose is citric hoppy, with some floral and perfumy tones. Smells nice.

Pours clear deep red with yellow highlights, large creamy head. Looks nice.

Flavor unleashes a rich maltiness - deeply caramel and sweet, but not cloying. Soft roast character. Spot of alcohol. This is nice. Thick, smooth body with minimal carbonation. Hops do not play a lead role in the flavor at all, despite making a grand impact on the aroma; not very bitter, not very hoppy. Tastes great. Feels nice. Very good drinkability.

A top-notch beer. Ben Miller you are the man.

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Photo of jpittman80
4.28/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I was really impressed with this beer. I'm not the biggest barleywine fan in the world, as I find that the English are often cloying and the Americans tend to over-hop for the alcohol level. This, however, is very nicely balanced. Pretty, clear copper brown with red highlights. The aroma is of piny hops, sweet caramel malt and a tinge of alcohol. The taste is pretty much the same. It started out a bit sweet, but the hops and alcohol quickly brought it in to check. Nice alcohol warmth that lasts. Packs a pretty good punch, seeing as it is so drinkable for the AC. I'm glad to see homebrewers pushing the envelope and mastering styles that the pros have a hard time with.

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Photo of kwjd
4.28/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep copper reddish-brown colour with a thick, tight white head and tons of lacing. Smells first of citrus hops when the bottle was opened, so much so that I thought this was going to be on the verge of being an IIPA. Once poured, the hops aren't quite as pronounced, but still there. Has a great citrus hop flavour, with some sweet caramel, bready malts. Very very smooth. This doesn't taste like 9.8% abv at all.

This is quite a good beer. If I had regular access to it, I could see myself buying it often.

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LongShot Mile High Barley Wine Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Beer rating: 3.87 out of 5 with 263 ratings
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