Barrel Works Series: Sapsquatch
Southern Tier Brewing Company

Barrel Works Series: SapsquatchBarrel Works Series: Sapsquatch
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Style:
Barleywine - American
Ranked #22
ABV:
14.9%
Score:
93
Ranked #1,966
Avg:
4.3 | pDev: 6.51%
Reviews:
49
Ratings:
97
From:
Southern Tier Brewing Company
 
New York, United States
Avail:
Rotating/Seasonal
Wants
  7
Gots
  13
SCORE
93
Outstanding
Barrel Works Series: SapsquatchBarrel Works Series: Sapsquatch
Notes: Brewed with local maple syrup, aged in bourbon barrels and on oak. A complicated beast aged on a trio of oak.
Reviews: 49 | Ratings: 97 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by Buck89:
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Buck89 from Tennessee

4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a plastic cup. A slightly hazy medium brown color with a small tan head. Big aromas as expected with sweet maple, vanilla, caramel, and a restrained bourbon presence. The taste took the experience to another level. All of the above flavors were there in relatively equal amounts and bathed in a glorious English, floral, malty Barleywine. Not overly sweet, not too dry or boozy - just delicious. Fantastic.

May 19, 2019
More User Reviews:
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dbl_delta from Pennsylvania

4.06/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Growler into pint glass. Pours a gorgeous clear deep dark amber red with a brief effervescent off-white head. Initial impression is a mix of maple syrup and bourbon - kinda like somebody poured a fifth of bourbon into a gallon of maple syrup. But after a bit you begin to notice dark fruits, blackstrap molassses, oak, and a touch of vanilla - it's way more complex than I thought. Mouthfeel is lighter than maple syrup but heavier than most barleywines within my experience. Alcohol is obvious - it might mellow a little with cellaring but a) it's a growler and b) I'm not that patient anyway, so I guess I'll never know. Trust me - it's pretty good fresh.
This is not going to be everybody's cuppa tea. It's sweet, it's boozy, and it demands respect. It's a lot like drinking that fifth of bourbon in maple syrup, but if you like that kind of thing (and can put up with the next-day carnage) it's worth a try.

Sep 06, 2019
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JakerLou from New Hampshire

4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Apr 24, 2019
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ummswimmin from New Jersey

4.27/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Apr 29, 2020
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VaporDome from New York

4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jul 06, 2019
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EMV from Pennsylvania

4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2017 vintage. Poured from a bomber into a Dogfish Head tulip

L: Cloudy/opaque mahogany brown pour with thin fizzy white head. reasonable ring of lacing.

S: Decadent and sweet... malts, brown sugar, maple syrup, and baking fruit. Vanilla and booze.

T.F: Follows the nose. Sweet and malty... toasted sugars. Caramel and maple syrup, vanilla and bourbon, oak, raisin, and molasses. Boozy... and at nearly 15% it should be. Medium to think bodied... sticky on the tongue. Gentle carbonation... complex... a bit of spice and hop coming in later for balance. Warming.

O: A big decadent beer... perfect for a cool night as a dessert or nightcap. Loads of flavor... better as it warms... all around solid effort.

Sep 03, 2020
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chinchill from South Carolina

3.89/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Summit Beer Station in WV.
Pours near black with a decent beige head.
The aroma has some wet leather and wood... Enough to limit it's appeal. Miraculously, the flavor is quite different and not the least bit challenging. Unlike many beers Brewed with maple syrup, the maple flavor really comes through in this ale. Sweet but not quite cloying, especially with.
Conservstive to moderate bourbon barrel effects.
Smooth medium body that seems a bit too light but that is well carbonated. High ABV is partially hidden.

Aug 06, 2019
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golf4collet from West Virginia

4.64/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Jan 08, 2020
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Jlabs from New York

4.31/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a tulip glass via bottle

Color is a rusty tan with beige foam

Smell is maple syrup, caramel and faint bourbon

Taste is sweet maple upfront mixed nicely with the bourbon barrel..getting some caramel and butterscotch notes as well

Carbonation is low, mouthfeel is thick but not over the top

A very nice barleywine

Jan 08, 2020
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trevormajor from Ohio

4.75/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

500 ML bottle, born on 3/15/2019, poured into a snifter at 54 degrees F:
L - caramel color with almost no head whatsoever
S - bourbon, caramel, peat, maple syrup
T - caramel and maple syrup, intertwined with bourbon and notes of peat and charred oak
F - smooth, like bourbon, minimal carbonation
O - great beer, flavors blend well together and the bourbon is not overpowering

Feb 20, 2021
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oberon from North Carolina

4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in April 2017.Pours into a goblet a burgundy infused mahogany with a thinner but surprisingly well sustained off white head atop,great rich color.Smells like maple sap and bourbon oak barrels,I get a bit of raw nut in there,so rich and inviting.Caramel covered nuts upfront on the palate wich I didn't even expect,maple sap,then the vanilla/bourbon flavors come into play with dark fruits lingering in the finish.A late nightcap sipper with so much decadent flavors going on,just fantastic....really.

Oct 29, 2017
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Treyliff from West Virginia

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

500ml bottle poured into a snifter
Bottled March 2019

A- pours ruby-brown in color with a one-finger foamy white head that has short retention

S- big bourbon note on the nose, as well as maple leading the way. Undertones of caramel, toffee, tobacco, leather, brown sugar, pecan pie, vanilla

T- malty, sweet and boozy up front, with big barrel notes of oak, vanilla and barrel juice. Mid-palate brings out the maple sweetness, along with caramel, toffee and molasses. The finish gives notes of tobacco, cocoa, brown sugar and a bit of hops. Lingers of booze, caramel and bourbon

M- medium-heavy body with moderate carbonation leads to a creamy mouthfeel and a warming boozy finish

O- a beast of a beer that has a nice mix of barrel and caramel notes throughout

Oct 19, 2019
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ejimhof from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jun 01, 2017
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jzeilinger from Pennsylvania

4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Many thanks to Knapp85 for sharing this bottle.

A - Deep burgundy, clear, steady carbonation, no lacing.

S - Smokey BBQ, maple syrup, vanilla, sappy oak, burnt toffee.

T - Burnt toffee, bourbon, vanilla, oak, butterscotch. Layer after layer with the flavor.

M - Big and full bodied. Thick, viscous, sticky.

O - This is a SERIOUS Barrel Barley. Definitely check this one out and kudos to Southern Tier!

May 24, 2017
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lordofthewiens from New Mexico

4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

In my teku the beer was a medium to dark brown with some red. A non-existant head.
Aroma of booze, maple syrup, toffee, vanilla, and oak.
Bourbon hits you first in the taste, followed by the maple syrup and toffee. Then the vanilla and oak show up, and the bourbon finishes.
Big beer! Sweet. I think the maple syrup has a calming effect on the bourbon.

Oct 01, 2017
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CaptainHate from Ohio

4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 4/17 1 pint 6 ounce bottle into a DFH tulip. Dark ruby mahogany color with a small head which quickly fades to just an outer ring. Etched fish at the bottom of the glass throws up a small circle of persistent bubbles, otherwise not much carbonation. Smell of sweet boozy dark fruit and maple. Taste reflects the smell but unlike other maple ales or stouts, the maple really comes forward as well as the slightly bitter aftertaste you get with pure maple syrup. I've often complained about Southern Tier cranking the sweetness to diabetic coma levels but for me they get this right. I don't know if the aging had anything to do with it but there is almost no hop presence compared to other American Barleywines and that is 100% not a complaint from me; much more like a British Barleywine. The booze is there but not overpowering at 14.9%. Mouthfeel isn't as oily as a British Barleywine but still a nicely thick minimally carbonated (but not flat and syrupy) retention of flavor.

I was very intrigued by this when it came out and it was too pricey for me to buy more, but now I wish I was cellaring more.

Jan 27, 2019
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johnnnniee from New Hampshire

4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle shared with Paul.
Dark copper with a decent sized tan head that persists. Rich brown sugar and caramel along with bits of maple and woody earthy barrel. Nice sipper.

May 26, 2019
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Pencible from Virginia

4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: This poured a clear dark garnet with quickly dissipating light tan head.
S: It smelled like maple syrup and vanilla and milk chocolate, with some leather and oak and toasted coconut and fig and aged basalmic.
T: It tasted like rich caramel and maple and vanilla, with some chocolate and oak and aged basalmic and fig and toasted coconut. It had a clean sweet aftertaste with lasting alcohol warming.
M: It was thick with moderate carbonation. Great big body.
D: This was a surprisingly good beer with rich and decadent scent and taste. Complex but well integrated, and sweet but not too cloying. The body was solid but the finish was really hot, so it must be sipped. A few years in the cellar would really help mellow this beast. Fresh was still great, just very hot.

Feb 01, 2018
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BeerForMuscle from New Jersey

4.14/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Sep 17, 2017
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jlindros from Massachusetts

4.14/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Light fizzy head, no retention, slight hazy ruby maroon red color

Nose big sweet candy, loads of maple and caramel, toffee, little butterscotch, touch of whiskey and vanilla oak

Taste big sweet maple candy, maple creams, butterscotch and big toffee, caramel, some hot fusel alcohol, mild buttery vanilla oak, toasted oak, touch of whiskey at best, spicy hop bitterness, sticky mild boozy finish

Mouth is thicker syrupy heavy bod, lighter carb, some fusel alcohol

Overall not bad, bit too sweet but quite nice, wish the whiskey barrel was bigger too

Dec 10, 2018
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clayrock81 from Florida

4.16/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a brown body with minimal head and the aroma is sugary with notes of wood, vanilla, booze, maple syrup. Slow drinking as sticky and thick, syrupy even, woody, notes of vanilla booze sweetness, touch of dark fruits from figs/prunes, some maple syrup sweetness and other sweet malts like caramel/toffee. Very sweet, cloying, an acquired taste as if you don't like sweet drinks this is one to steer from.

Jul 21, 2017
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avalon07 from South Carolina

4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

L: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a dark brown color and a thick, murky texture. There was a small amount of foamy head that quickly dissipated. Not a whole lot of lacing here.

S: A big, powerful aroma of maple syrup, malt, hops, caramel, and bourbon.

T: Tasted of a decent amount of hops (more in the finish), some of the bourbon barrel (very oaky), caramel, a big shot maple syrup (always welcome), light malt notes, and vanilla. A massive, aggressive flavor. Unlike a lot of beers that advertise maple syrup, you can actually taste it here. Complex, somewhat boozy, and likable.

F: A fair amount of carbonation with a slick, syrupy finish. Full-bodied.

O: Sapsquatch is not for the faint of heart. It's a high ABV% monster with a lot of character. Highly drinkable.

Oct 29, 2017
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SLeffler27 from New York

4.21/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours crystal clear, shiny dark copper. A slight, brief, off-white foam swirls with a thick, viscous film, pushing a thin ring of lace up the wall of a Pretentious Beer Glass Company cider glass.

The aroma is sweet with light bourbon and light oak. Vanilla outshines maple syrup initially with the maple building after each sip. Warmth brings out toasted coconut followed by toffee and prunes. Alcohol is prominent in this complex, multi-layered beer.

Surprisingly, the balance is maintained. None of the aroma is lost but the sweet bourbon is elevated. Vanilla is a close second. The flavors develop exceptionally well as it warms. The finish is long, mild and boozy. Extended warmth reveals peat smoke.

Alcohol is high but controlled for 14.9% ABV. Modest, prickly carbonation adds to the nylon texture of this medium bodied beer.

This is clearly a winter holiday beer and pairs nicely with a cold, damp, rustic and breezy day. A wood fire burns in the distance. While not quite solitude, I have my wife and dog by my side amidst a peaceful calm.

Feb 25, 2018
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tigg924 from Massachusetts

4.48/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours clear, dark brown in color with minimal head and carbonation. Taste is deep caramel, vanilla, butterscotch, oak, and maple syrup...The maple really comes out as this one warms...Heavy bodied, very sweet, low carbonation...Layers and layers open up, especially as this beer warms...A lot better if you give it time to sit in your glass...Another really tasty beer from Southern Tier...Tastes more like an English barleywine and a good one at that...I will get this again.

Jun 03, 2017
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Brianito from Tennessee

4.49/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Jan 07, 2018
Barrel Works Series: Sapsquatch from Southern Tier Brewing Company
Beer rating: 93 out of 100 with 97 ratings