Drake's Barrel Aged Jolly Rodger | Drake's Brewing Co.

Drake's Barrel Aged Jolly RodgerDrake's Barrel Aged Jolly Rodger
28 Ratings
Drake's Barrel Aged Jolly RodgerDrake's Barrel Aged Jolly Rodger

Brewed by:
Drake's Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by lou91 on 12-11-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 28 |  Reviews: 21
Reviews by rye726:
Photo of rye726
4.31/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a viscous, woody brown with hints of maple. Very nice color, but not much of a head.

Exquisite nose has brandy, oak, vanilla, dark pitted fruits, candy malts, port wine and whiskey.

Taste does not hold the same complexity. Some tart cherries, plums, caramel, toffee, wood, vanilla, wine grapes and cognac.

Medium body is lightly carbonated. Past prime for sure, but still an interesting beer.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of watermelonman
4.1/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This poured to a hefty black color with little carbonation. There's no head or lace.

The smell is deep and strong with hints of bourbon. Strong dark fruit flavors come through in the taste along with a bit of alcohol. The mouthfeel is surprisingly light but still appealing. Drinkability takes a hit for the alcohol flavor but stays pretty good.

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Photo of IntriqKen
3.35/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I don't know what I was expecting, but this wasn't quite it.
Poured a muddy tea color with a very faint head that disappeared immediately.
Aroma is oak, light fruits, and alcohol.
Taste was a surprise. There is the hint of a Wee Heavy, but it has totally changed in this brew. Somehow the smokey flavors become masked by the oak aging, I think. Smokey is still there, but you really have to look for it.
Sweet amber malts are assaulted immediately by sour fruit flavors...sour cherry and sour grape mostly.
Becomes VERY drying afterwards due to the sour fruits. Lots of oak follows as the sourness slowly fades.
Interesting, but not to be sought out again.
For the price, I'll invest in the other beers in this series that Drake does so well.

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Photo of Sammy
2.88/5  rDev -20%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A small bottle of soy sauce, thanks for the extra Captain Cougar. Pours oily yellow.A tad of scotch and booy aroma. Muddled taste with some scotch and this salty soy. Drinkable with lunch, barely.There was some bulk in mouthfeel. A bit of wood and a drop of vanilla from he barrel, was expecting more.

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Photo of CharlesDarwin
2.76/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 1 | overall: 2.5

Originally reviewed on April 26, 2006. 6 Oz Bottle. Pour of almost no head, with a soapy body of extremely murky milky brown, almost sickly in appearance. Decent, but somewhat light aroma of figs, rich warm port, heavy vinous grape notes, pie cherries, and a fluvial run of sherried malt notes. Congruous, but not exciting. Flat. Absolutely no carbonation. Flavor is a watery sherried out vinous failure. It tastes very much like an even mix of water, cheap fortified wine, and a weak scotch ale, with no carbonation of course. Alcohol is peculiar. It’s nonexistant at first, but then warms the back of the mouth. There are some dry cherry and oak notes, hidden among the deluge of sour grapes. Poor use of a barrel, I would say. A little tartness. Finish is grape skin dry. Smack of fresh apples.

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Photo of HaveUSeenMyCellar
4.75/5  rDev +31.9%

Photo of lou91
3.7/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Another 6oz. Special release in the barrel age series – this one at 11% abv. and aged for 18 months. Dark brown root beer color. Nice but nothing outstanding in the nose. The bottle does not say what type of barrel this was aged in but there are some oak and bourbon notes. This is a complex beer with a pleasant citrus malty sweetness and a long dry aftertaste. Nice to try but can’t say I would try it again. Also $6 at Ledger's.

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Photo of rallison
3.1/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Dark reddish black with basically no head, just a touch of lacing.

S: Boozy, sweet and caramel-y.

T: Different, but not in entirely good ways. Lots of booze - whiskey like - is apparent. Raisins and whiskey soaked dark fruits. Just a touch of sour grape flavor (barely, barely noticeable).

M: Carbonation is too low in my opinion. Makes this beer a bit flat.

D: 6oz is just about as much as I want of this beer.

Overall, not recommended, especially considering the price.

 489 characters

Photo of largadeer
3.25/5  rDev -9.7%

Photo of weeare138
3.74/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Much thanks to egajdzis for this...
Appears a hazy dark brown with a small head that quickly fades out into a thin collar.
Smell is of lots of caramel, bourbon oak, raisins, and doughy bread.
Taste is of the same aromas with some tart cherries thrown into the mix.
Mouthfeel is cloyingly sweet, tart, chewy, with caramel standing out and lingering.

 352 characters

Photo of ppoitras
2.4/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

6oz bottle acquired in trade with Jetsbeer. Thanks for the opportunity. Gold foiled cap.

Poured in a Rapscallion glass, poured a totally still almost opaque root beer brown brew. Aroma is boozy scotch, with oaky notes. Almost scared to take a sip, maybe I'm not worthy, but here goes... Taste is of leathery malts upfront, but quickly shouted down by tart dark fruitiness, and closes with a return to the leather albeit with some warming from the alcohol. Mouthfeel is way thin, and I just couldn't see trying this one again. It's like the smokey malt flavors that I love in a scotch ale were taken out, and replaced by these other flavors that don't really belong. Not sure this is the barrel effect, or what, but not impressed.

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Photo of aaronyoung01
4.4/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of grub
3.57/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

got this one from fartingdog as part of BC2. you definitely want this dog to leave a package on your lawn. thanks dave!

6oz bottle topped with gold foil wrapper. bottle lists 11.1%abv. dave has written '2005-2006 release' on it.

the bottle opens without a trace of carbonation. pours clear deep red, not quite brown, with no sign of head or even a single bubble of carbonation despite an aggressive pour.

aroma is crazy. smells like a fine mead. honey sweetness. alcohol. vanilla and a bit of bourbon. huge caramel nose. lots of fruit too - cherry, strawberry, date, raisin. i find myself comparing this to port, sherry, and mead more than beer.

taste is nice. right away i think of mead and port, but thinner and not as strong. there's a bit of alcohol and a nice honey sweetness. light caramel. a nice fruity blend similar to what i got in the aroma - cherry, date, raisin, grape. light vanilla. raw oak. low bitterness level. bit of bready malt.

mouthfeel is ok. zero carbonation really hurts this one. the body feels a bit thin too. this would be nice with at least a little carbonation, which would probably help with the thinness of the body.

drinkability is ok. sips like a port or a mead, but doesn't stand on its own as well. the alcohol is fairly well hidden, but this just doesn't drink like a beer - let alone a scotch ale/wee heavy.

 1,351 characters

Photo of hopdog
4.09/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nip sized bottle shared courtesy of egajdzis (thanks!).

Poured a darker brown color with almost no head. Aromas of vanilla, whisky, some wood, and caramel. Tastes of stronger bourbon/whisky, dark cherries, and caramel. Had a medium alcohol finish. It also finished lightly tart.

Notes from and tasted on 3/31/06

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Photo of stephendr
3.46/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Dull mud brown murky appearance – no head - nose is sour cherries and alcohol – light medium body – initial taste is sweet then turns acidic/green apple sour, and a little malty but end sweet in the mouth - aftertaste is sour shortDull mud brown murky appearance – no head - nose is sour cherries and alcohol – light medium body – initial taste is sweet then turns acidic/green apple sour, and a little malty but end sweet in the mouth - aftertaste is sour shortDull mud brown murky appearance – no head - nose is sour cherries and alcohol – light medium body – initial taste is sweet then turns acidic/green apple sour, and a little malty but end sweet in the mouth - aftertaste is sour short

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: The gold foil alone adds a distinctive look to this offering and the demure 6 ounce green glass dimpled based bottle certainly accentuates that. Smart looking red and white screen printed bottle has a rather gruesome Skull & Crossbones with the words ‘Drake’s Jolly Rodger” underneath. To the left additional text sheds some more light onto this one “Hand Crafted Drake’s Barrel Aged Series”, to the right yet more clues “Limited Release Jolly Rodger Scotch Ale”. Listed at a whopping 11.1% Alc/Vol. This is a one-off brew based on the “regular” Jolly Rodger and then Barrel-Aged for 18 months.

The labels blurb states; “For centuries the Scots have been masters at brewing beer. At Drakes we have attempted to honor their efforts. Our brewer Rodger combined European malts and hops to create this ruby red strong ale. Slightly sweet with hints of roasted malt this wee heavy Scotch ale was then barrel aged for 18 months to enhance the intense flavors. So enjoy this as you would any fine after dinner beverage and give a toast to the Scots, who've only been brewing beer since 6500B.C. This is a very limited release and won't be repeated.”

Appearance: The gold foil hides a very colorful Drake’s crown cap. Once off the contents pour with a dark brown body. Held to the light a gorgeous ruby, slightly turbid, hue appears. Low key head with a large bubbled halo covering and zero carbonation. Settles to a Port-like existence.

Nose: Soft touch Bourbon lingers beneath a wet-woody aroma. Shifting alcohol, vinous traits….had a smell reminiscent of those thin wooden forks (so often dispensed with Take-Out newspaper wrapped Fish & Chips) soaked in Malt Vinegar. Deeper inhalations reveal a staid Sherry-like tannic odor.

Taste: Oaky start with some soiled bourbon wood and a red grape feel. Port-like middle with a finish that has a strong vinous aspect and dark fruits. Nice enough but a little too much Bourbon like flavors in this Scotch Ale for my liking. I am not sure what kind of Barrel they used for this…..but maybe, just maybe, they could have procured a Scotch Whisky Barrel, now that would have been interesting.

Mouthfeel: Dry finish with a warming sweetness is welcome. Big feel to this one, the alcohol is prominent but not dominant.

Drinkability: Has a hefty tag at $6.95 for the 6ounce bottle but I have grown to like Drake’s beers these past few months so I willingly splashed the cash on this one. Was it worth it?…..well sort of, but it would have been much better in an old Macallan Cask for sure.

Overall: Barrel-Aged Jolly Rodger….Aaaarrrrghhh……..

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Photo of clickpush
1.81/5  rDev -49.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Warning - despite the current forum conversation about rating beers you don't like, I've got to get this out of my system.

Pour: Awesome looking (albeit extremely expensive - $7.50) 6oz bottle to 1.5oz crystal liqueur glass. Looks like an over-aged red wine, a sappy brown color with red hues and absolutely no head.

Nose: Very strong notes of both scotch and wine, chocolate, and fresh fruit (grape). Very strong presence of alcohol. Really an interesting aroma for a beer, and it excited me about tasting it.

Mouth: Okay, I think this is where the controversy comes in. I couldn't drink this stuff. With no carbonation, this tasted like a shot that was half scotch and half vinegar and that had a peppery alcoholic kickback. Admittedly, I don't know a whole lot about this style, but I have to add my opinion. This was a repugnant beer that I need never try again.

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Photo of PA-Michigander
4.25/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of brewandbbq
3.85/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

No vintage date on the nip-sized bottle.

The cap gets cracked without even the slightest whisp, and the beer pours perfectly flat. Dark mahogany and clear body, with amber hues when held to the light.

Aromatics lead off with a blast of bourbon, cherries, port, and malt. Hints of oaky tannins, vanilla, smoke, toffee, and leather follow through.

Medium bodied, with a slick, syrupy mouthfeel.

Plump malt, cherry pulp, bourbon, and drying oak start the palate. A tart fruitiness steps forward along with leathery overtones and an earthy dryness.

Finishes with lingering tart fruit, warming booze, and Sherry.

Too bad the beer was totally flat, because I really enjoyed the level of boozyness and tart overtones. Very complex, but with no carbonation it falls way short of greatness.

Big ups to BA urwatuh8 for a great bonus beer!

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Photo of blitheringidiot
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From 6.0 oz bottle...yes 6.0 oz bottle, Jolly Rodger slips into a wine glass with a dark opaque hue of deep rust russet hues topped with a scant skim razor thin collar of khaki ring. Swirls do nada towards rising a froth.

Oak barrel scents greet the nose along the lines of whiskey barrel and some peat moss. Reminders of Samuel Adams Triple Bock. Lots of wood nse, final nose is a Twizzlers red sugar.

First swigs: Cherry lolipop malt front followed through with a boozy rum. Wood saw dust creeps into the flavor. Some red grape and orange peel citrus zest. Hazy scotch and smoky peat. A tad cherry juice finish.

Feel is rich and full bodied. Boozy nature detracts from the appeal.

Last swigs: These 6.0 oz bottles must be a gimmick. Get real. Is the beer this rare? c'mon. $8? I gave it a shot. This either should be more affordable or in a bigger bottle for the same price. Overall, a bomb of cherry booze and scotch wood barrel.

Beer is good unless it's a ripoff. Happy beering.

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Photo of CheapBeerBuzz
3/5  rDev -16.7%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of t0rin0
4.22/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Found this on the shelf at Hollingshead a couple weeks back. Dissapointing that its only a 6 oz bottle (especially for $8).

Pours a dark brown with some red showing through. No head and therefor no lace or retention. Moderately clear for a barrel aged beer.

Smell is of oak and whiskey. There is some scotch ale dark malt smell there too but its mostly of the liquor and the barrel it came from. There is also a noticeable alcohol aroma.

Taste is beautiful. Scotch flavor mixed with scotch ale flavor. Not that these two are similar but they blend wonderfully. I think this beer wouldn't be as good if it was highly carbonated. Alcohol taste is noticeable but not distracting.

Heavy body, low carbonation, kinda oily. It would be nice if this came in 12 oz bottles.

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Photo of tmoneyba
4.07/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Small bottle with foil cover from Freakin Frog, Las Vegas.

Poured dark brown color with mimimal head that was mostly diminished with minimal lacing. Heavy woody, peat and scotch alcohol aroma. Medium body with a sticky texture. Medium to heavy bittersweet flavor with a medium to heavy bittersweet woody scotch finish of moderate to long duration.

Good brew.

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Drake's Barrel Aged Jolly Rodger from Drake's Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.6 out of 5 with 28 ratings
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