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Mill Street Barley Wine (2007-2011) | Mill Street Brew Pub

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Mill Street Barley Wine (2007-2011)Mill Street Barley Wine (2007-2011)
60 Ratings
Mill Street Barley Wine (2007-2011)Mill Street Barley Wine (2007-2011)

Brewed by:
Mill Street Brew Pub
Ontario, Canada

Style: English Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by pootz on 12-23-2007

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 60 |  Reviews: 44
Photo of wordemupg
3.47/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml swing pop top ceramic bottle poured into tulip 7/7/11

A hazy brownish orange with only a thin film after a angry pour that leaves no lace

S dried plum with some brown sugar, raisin and booze

T not far from the smell but with a boozy brandy caramel flavor and I pick up on earthy hops but I'm not sure why, just a little citrus rind on the finish

M a little syrupy and sticky on the lips, fairly full bodied but the heat's hard to miss

O I expected more form a well aged barley wine but I'd stop well before saying it's bad.

I'd say some aging would mellow it out a bit but its already been 3 years, waaayyy over priced at 14$ a bottle here in Alberta I don't see myself aging another, I'd take a bottle of Alley Kat's Olde Duet and 10$ buck change any day over this one

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Photo of dragonofblood
3.9/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I am sampling a bottle from 2009, marked "Batch No. 09-669-673". It has been aged in my cellar since that time.

Appearance: Pours out a burnt orange colour. A head takes a while to form, eventually forming a soapy, craggy, slightly off white foam that quickly dissipates. Very little lacing.

Smell: Interesting. Molasses, dark fruit (plums I believe), bready malts, a lot of sweet caramel, clove. Very little alcohol, no detectable hops.

Taste: A small honey-like sweetness, a nice spiciness on the finish. Big flavour of molasses, underscored by the aforementioned dark fruits, very little bitterness. The 11% alcohol has either mellowed out to near nonexistence due to aging or was very well hidden by the brewer.

Mouthfeel: Unexpectedly thin. I prefer barley wines to be thicker with a warming stickiness.

Overall: A very nice barley wine from Ontario, but it is a second class citizen compared to the heavyweights of the style.

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Photo of evlu1441
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 Batch. I dig the bottle!

pours a hazy dark amber colour. Not much head.

Smell is intense! Alcohol is strong off the bat. It gives way to some dried fruit and nutty notes.

Tastes very nice! Alcohol is very present here, but it goes away quickly. It's quite sweet to start, and followed by some nutty/toffee flavours and some slight bitterness. The aftertaste is sweet and pleasant.

The mouthfeel is heavy with fine carbonation tickling the tongue.

Overall, this is only the second barleywine I've had. I didn't really enjoy the first one, so was a bit hesitant with this one. I'm pleasantly surprised! It's a nice beer.

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Photo of fostachild
3.87/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

2010 batch. nice medium amber colour, not much head at all but a little bubbly lacing which eventually faded completely.

smell was fruity, grapes, wine, little alcohol.

taste was very sweet/fruity but still really nice. also had a slight syrup feel to it. hardly any carbonation but decent drinkability.

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Photo of kwjd
3.7/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap at Volo on a 12 bars of Christmas pub crawl. Convinced my rugby team to come to Volo since we were walking by to save me from the endless stream of Canadian/Keith's/Bud.

Pours an amber-brown colour with thin white head. Some lacing around the glass, nice head retention. Smells quite sweet of brown sugar, vanilla hops and lots of caramel malt. Alcohol is fairly noticeable in the flavour. Smooth mouthfeel. Nice barleywine.

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Photo of bylerteck
3.67/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2009 vintage.

A - Half finger of off white/beige head on a hazy dark orange body. Medium carbonation.

S - Sugar, lot's of dark fruit, booze, boozy fruitcake, and breadiness.

T - Very, very sweet to start. Same boozy fruitcake element, booze, caramel. Lot's of sugar and dark fruits. Sweetness doesn't offend in the finish which is a plus.

M - Minimal carbonation, full bodied, some stickiness from the sweetness.

D - A little too sweet but otherwise a quality barleywine. Good to share but a whole bottle would have been a chore. Nice one but the price is a bit of a downer as well as the packaging size.

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Photo of StarshipPoopers
3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Deep ruby colour with decent transparency. Head is quite minimal while being poured and dissipates quickly into a ring. Quite a bit of carbonation.

S - Sweet. The main flavours to show through are apple and other fruits with caramel coming through afterward. Slight hint of booziness without much of anything in the way of bitterness.

T - Mirrors the smell. The initial flavour is of apples and other fruits, then the caramel malts and a very faint trace of alcohol and bitterness from the hops finishes it.

In my opinion this drink gets a lot better at room temperature. The flavours get thicker and the bitterness and booziness comes through a lot more pronounced at this temperature, the sweetness dies down a bit. Still though, this is a sweet drink with a fairly solid malt backbone and the bitterness and alcohol are very contained.

M/D - Heavy mouthfeel that leaves a sweet coating for a long time after. Going down the smoothness becomes a little harsh from the alcohol and hops which is a welcome change from the otherwise uniformity of the mouthfeel.

All around it's a pretty good barleywine. The taste could have been more complex and it's a little sweet for my taste, but it's still a good drink.

That being said, it's too much money for what you get. The packaging is nice but unnecessary, and the flavour doesn't justify an $11 price tag.

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Photo of mrnobody
2.71/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

2010 vintage. 500ml ceramic swingtop bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a clear dark ruby with a small white head.

S: Smells of alcohol, figs and cherries.

T: Tastes of alcohol and candied fruit. There is some bitterness in the finish. Overall, this has a cough syrup aftertaste.

M: I'm not well versed in the style of this beer but the mouthfeel is what I'd expect: a little syrupy with fairly low carbonation.

D: This is pretty hot and the aftertaste lowers the drinkability further.

The bottle is pretty unique but sadly what's inside does not measure up. Also much too expensive: $12 for this when Fuller's Vintage Ale is $7? No way.

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Photo of strangemusic
3.67/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear amber colour with little or no head to speak of. Characteristic of the style and high ABV, but not terribly impressive.

Smell is orange, apple, alcohol, spice, apple cider and lots of caramelized malt.

Taste is remarkably boozy, with cloves, apples, caramel, honey, orange peel and a bit of hops. Kind of one-sided in terms of its alcohol punch though.

MF is full and has the zing of high alcohol, with some syrupy character.

Drinkability not bad, but very sweet and thus not the most inviting of sips.

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Photo of dgilks
3.65/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 Vintage

Rich, rounded malt aroma with notes of grain, honey, alcohol and fruit.

Moderately hazy amber colour with a very small off-white head. No head retention.

Very sweet malt, almost sickly, plenty of honey. Nice, big bitterness to balance but it is still very sweet and a little cloying.

Medium-full body with moderate carbonation.

A decent English Barleywine though the execution leaves a little to be desired. The cloyingness is not great.

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Photo of Gosox8787
4.5/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 2009 vintage poured from a 500mL ceramic bottle sealed with a flip top. Labeled 11% ABV on the bottle instead of the 10% listed here.

Appearance: Brownish orage in color without an haze. Pours a one finger white to beige head that receded quickly into a nice thin lacing.

Aroma: Tart green apple and sweet apple cider notes hit first. The malt shows with biscuit and bread notes. A little hop bitterness is present around the end. Strong aromas and some nice complexity here.

Taste: Tart apple and apple cider sweetness offer a nice sweet hit upfront. Warming booze and nice biscuity sweetness from the malt come in strong next. Hop bitterness hits near the end. The hops are a lot stronger here than in the aroma. Finish is bitter pine notes fron the hops, with a little malt backbone.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and syrupy. znot much carbonation. Very smooth. Goes down easy for such a strong barleywine.

Drinkability: The ABV doesn't feel as strong as it is. The flavors also aren't overpowering and are well balanced. Very drinkble overall.

Overall, a great English barleywine. Very good balance and a light mouthfeel for the style make it enjoyable and drinkable. The tart apple flavor profile really ties this brew together.

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Photo of jhall00
3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2009 Edition

A- The beer pours a dark amber with a bright white generous head.

S- Fruit and sweet malty with under lying alcohol

T- Tastes of caramelized fruits overpowering the caramel maltiness with a large alcohol finish. This beer definitely needs to bottle age.

M- A full bodies beer with continuing fruity sweetness

D- Not very complex...mostly sweet fruity alcohol.

I will be interested to see how this beer bottle ages.

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Photo of Shadman
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good bonus marks given for packaging...the pot stopper bottle, old style fake ceramic, etc.

Very bright copper in color, clear with decent head and lacing.

Yeasty, with dried fruit malt and floral hop. Bit of of booziness as well.

Sweet malt, very much like butterscotch cany or caramel with a good dose of yeasty breadinees for good measure. I found the 50 IBU hops to be noticeable and in decent balance and provided a nice, dryer finish to the obvious sweetness.

Over all, thick, sweet, and chewy...so in my limited Barley Wine experieince...par for the course.

Expensive, but I will try and cellar a bottle to try in the winter of 2012.

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Photo of WeedKing4
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 edition. 500ml cereamic jug like bottle pours a dark amber orange into a Duvel glass. Two fingers of foam lace the glass with lots of little bubbles rising to the top. Smells of sweet fruits like orange and lingers with english malts. Tastes of sweet fruits with a little hop bite and malt backbone finish. Its a sipper, but the 11% abv is well masked. Pretty decent beer overall.

2010 edition. Pours a very dark clear amber colour. Tastes of of dark fruits like pear or apple almost to a degree. This drinks down very smooth actually and the finish's well. Its probably the best beer I have had from this brewery, but thats not saying a whole lot. This bottle is a pain in the ass to open too lol

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Photo of cratez
3.92/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2009 edition. 500ml swing-top poured into a snifter.

Look: light copper-orange with a few spots of lace. Second pour produces a ring of bright white head. The standard dullness of a barley wine, but the colour is quite appealing.

Aroma: apple cider, pears, oak, vanilla, dark grapes, and alcohol.

Taste: sticky caramelized fruit, sweet candy-like pale malts, very faint honey. Good hop bitterness toward the end, floral with a bit of apple and grape skin. Boozy, warming finish.

Mouthfeel: full-bodied brew, fairly thick and syrupy, prickly bitterness in the aftertaste. Not much dryness.

Overall: compared to other barley wines, this lacks depth, boldness, and complexity, but it's still a great sipper. A straightforward yet damn tasty strong ale.

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Photo of markaberrant
3.43/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5


A - light orange, mostly clear, splotchy white bubbles on top

S - malty and boozy, marmalade (but not in a good way like St Ambroise Anniversary or Fullers Vintage, just kinda blah), spicy, cinnamon, hint of berry

T - big improvement over the aroma, smooth, carmel candy malt, much cleaner than the nose, not much depth or complexity, tastes pretty much the same from the tip of the tongue to the aftertaste, finishes reasonably dry despite the low hopping, must be the alcohol doing it

M - creamy, somewhat sticky/syrupy, but ok for style, noticable alcohol, but smooth and warming

D - very one dimensional, not awful, and I'll finish the bottle, but I'm not interested in ever having another.

I avoided buying this beer for a very long time due to the so-so reviews and ridiculous price due to packaging. Then in a moment of weakness (I was flush with cash), I plunked down the $10 and figured I'll make up my own mind about the taste of this beer. But then it sat in my cellar for almost another year, as I just didn't see the need to rush into this. Tonight, I peered into my "drink now" stash, and this guy finally got his turn to show me what he's got.

Not much.

It's actually brewed reasonably well. In my blunt opinion, the recipe sucks. They are clearly going for an english style, but the malt character is just limp. I knew I was in trouble as soon as I poured it and noticed how light in colour it is (their Tankhouse Ale is darker).

Drop the stupid ceramic bottle, and crank up the malt character.

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Photo of bobsy
3.83/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

My scoring for this is an average of all versions I've had...

2007 version (drank fresh) - 500 ml ceramic bottle from the LCBO. Pours a nice copper colour with a big rocky head. It really looks the part, and glows nicely - top marks. Sweet aroma, with strong caramel hints, and a waft of alcohol. Lots of caramel and ripe fruit in the flavour, with a faint bitter finish and warming alcohol notes. Kinda reminds me of a rich marmalade. Chewy mouthfeel with a restrained carbonation is par for the style. A great beer now, but I think it will improve drastically with a year or two behind it.

2008/2009 blend - dry hopped and cask conditioned for Volo's 5th Annual Cask Days. This barleywine has a significantly different appearance from the cask. Now its more of a murky orange, and there's no head at all, which is somewhat expected. The aroma has amped up the citrus and downplayed the alcohol (despite a rise in ABV to 11%). Caramel and juicy citrus in the flavour - orange, grapefruit and tangerine. Considering there's very limited carbonation, the alcohol is skillfully hidden. Chewy mouthfeel. The higher hopping and more pronounce citrus edges this version more towards the American than English category.

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Photo of Sammy
2.9/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

2008/2009 blend dry hopped at Cask at Volo Grapefruit colour with soapy head. Very cloying taste, not so drinkable. 50 IBU and there are hops there but not balanced. Mild barleywine aroma. Average mouthfeel. I do not know what blend did, but dry hopping added some hop flavour to an English style.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.88/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2007 version. Ceramic swing-top bottle that looks good as it sweats when pulled from the fridge to sit for a spell before being cracked...

This beer pours a hazy dark orange-apricot colour, with a single finger of thin foamy light beige head, which dissipates rather quickly, leaving no lace in its wake. It smells initially, from a distance, of alcohol, like fermenting fruit. Up close, essences of candy sugar, dark fruit, caramel malt, and more alcohol are evident. The taste is sweet bready, caramel malt, tangy ripe dark fruit, a bit of woody alcohol, and some floral, earthy hops. The carbonation is quite tame, the body big, chewy, and syrupy, and it finishes warm, just a wee burn amongst the lingering sugary sweetness. A pretty decent hop-restrained malt bomb in the English style.

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Photo of Viggo
3.73/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500 ml ceramic swingtop, you really pay for the bottle for this beer. 2007 edition, batch # 07-557-560.

Pours a clear dark amber/golden orange, mead colour, very thick and tight off white head forms, quickly settles down to a thin layer and ring, some lacing sticks to the glass. This looks pretty good. Smell is very sweet and sugar, alcohol fumes come out right away, lots of sweet fruits, raisins, apples, toffee, biscuits, corn syrup, brown sugar, very sweet but pretty rich aroma. Taste is very sweet up front, lots of caramel and brown sugar, toasty malts, fruit, rum raisins, some vanilla comes through, almost oaky, alcohol, weak in the finish, very rich, and the finish really reminds of waffles with butter and syrup. Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with low carbonation, some alcohol heat going down, very smooth and buttery in the finish. Has some good points and not so good points, but overall an enjoyable barleywine. Flavour is weak, but enough to keep me interested.

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Photo of hoppymeal
4.05/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a murky medium copper color with amber tint, small off white to cream head recedes to a thick ring around the perimeter of the glass. Aroma is some sweet fruitiness, a strong white grape scent, also some sweet pruniness, a bit of breadiness, and a hint of coconut along with a whiff of alcohol. Taste follows with a caramel, grape and prune sweeteness dominating, some of the coconut comes thru as well, and breadiness in the finish. Mouthfeel is medium to heavy in body, rich and sugary like a barleywine, but not overly so. Nice fine, soft carbonation adds to the pleasant texture of this one. A bit of alcohol warmth in the throat in the finish. Overall a really good barleywine, very tastey and a great feel to it. Thanks to Eric for the opportunity to try this one.

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Photo of charlesw
2.43/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pretty pale, very low carbonation/head but, ah, beautiful and sticky lacing helps make up for some of that. And, hey, this is a really cool bottle - sure it has the flip top (like many others) but also has a little handle you can use to carry it around built in to the flip top mechanism.

Doesn't have that English smell - you know, the sweet prune one? It's more light and grassy. Hints of sweet caramels malts.

Tastes, well, shucks. How could I possibly have had two completely different barleywines from completely different parts of the world - completely random choices - that had the same off flavor? And this, one right after the other. Really really weird. Anyway, tastes to me like T-58 yeast. Like a little strange and a little infected and a little bubblegum, you know? Other than that it is pleasant enough while not being enough of anything to be English or American or whatever.

The alcohol is well-hidden. The mouth is pretty close for the 'merican style but there's no hop backbone. It's kind of close for English style but on the light side and certainly not sweet enough.

I suppose that since I've gone crazy getting and reviewing all of these barleywines, and aside from the Andygator, this is the one I've had that is the least like a barleywine.

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Photo of shamus
3.81/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Comes in a ceramic 500ml bottle with a wire frame rubber rimmed stopper. An attractive bottle so I'm giving it a 4.5 on appearance even though usually I apply that rating for the actual contents.

Smells hmm. Strong. it is strong at 11%. It really is a wine in that sense. the taste is like a very sweet whiskey. In fact it even has that mouthfeel of a decent whiskey that rolls like a bead around the tongue.

I like it but it's strong. no false advertising on that label.

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Photo of Voonder
3/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Pours dark orange in colour with thin white head which stayed for a while. Nice sweet and citrusy smell, also yeasty smell is noticable there. You can taste the alcohol, but it doesn't feel out of balance. Mouthfeel is really thick and sticky.
Well, it's my first barley wine, it's really interesting, and I kinda like it, but if you're talking about drinkability, well I'm having troubles finishing that bottle:) It doesn't mean I won't have another one next time.

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Photo of allergictomacros
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear amber with a decent head of white foam. Kinda slow pouring out of this bottle. Very sticky lacing head. Starts clouding up on the second pour.

S - Soy sauce comes to mind first off. Very malty with a candy-like sweetness. Notes of apple, toffee and alcohol.

T - Apples come on strong, but fade quickly into a complex alcohol/malt/fruit middle. Hops finish this off with an assertive, but shortlived bitterness. Very boozy, but doesn't detract from the overall experience. Hint of pine in the finish.

M - Very heavy, slick and syrupy.

D - Solid offering in my books. Big, delicious barleywine with fairly clean flavours that maybe doesn't stand out, but is more than acceptable.

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Mill Street Barley Wine (2007-2011) from Mill Street Brew Pub
Beer rating: 3.62 out of 5 with 60 ratings
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