Termination Dust
Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Termination DustTermination Dust
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Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Alaska, United States
English Barleywine
Ranked #86
Ranked #4,100
4.18 | pDev: 7.89%
Sep 01, 2023
Sep 11, 2014
Belgian-style barleywine aged in bourbon oak barrels. The Alaskana term "Termination Dust" means a light, high altitude snowfall that indicates the end of summer. By mid- to late September, Anchorage folks look to the east at the Chugach Mountain range for Termination Dust. Head Brewer (and Alyeska Ski Patrolman) Lee Ellis determines when this beer will be released based on when Termination Dust hits Flattop, a popular hiking peak that is visible from MSBC. We tap this beer each fall when Lee gives the official call.
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Photo of Rug
Reviewed by Rug from Massachusetts

4.06/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Bottled 9/20/21

This is my first beer fron Midnight Sun, a brewery I’ve heard great things about. This one sounds really interesting, a “Belgian Barleywine”. I’m not too sure how different this will be from a Belgian Strong Ale, but I’m excited to find out. Let’s get into it

Pours an opaque orange brown with a finger of creamy light tan head that quickly fades to a thin cap and leaves minimal lacing

The nose here is interesting, almost a direct blend of an English Barleywine and a Belgian Strong Ale. I’m picking up on aromas of overripe banana, orange marmalade, brown sugar, praline pecan, sweet bourbon, toasted oak, raisin, sweet vanilla, light clove, and pear skin

It’s pretty similar in taste, but that bourbon is much more forward. On the front end of the sip I’m tasting sweet bourbon, honey, orange zest, toasted oak, brown sugar, molasses, apple skin, clove, dark bread, toffee, light raisin, and vanilla. The swallow brings notes of sharp bourbon, charred oak, molasses, burnt caramel, sweet honey, golden raisin, clove, light vanilla, and orange zest

A medium body pairs with gentle carbonation, resulting in a slick beer. Finishes neutral with a boozy punch

This one is definitely out there, but it’s pretty good. I don’t think the bourbon barrel aging was exactly necessary for a beer like this but oh well
Sep 01, 2023
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Reviewed by StonedTrippin from Colorado

4.01/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
really neat concept for a beer, built like an english barleywine, but fermented with a belgian yeast strain, not at all to be confused with a belgian strong dark or a quad type, even with the yeast this one still reads more barleywine than classic belgian, and the bourbon barrel treatment really amps things up, i was stoked on this little bottle, these guys make some wicked strong ales! dense and slightly dull brownish color to this, some decent carbonation activity but still sort of weighty looking, some sediment swirling but not bad. the nose is cool, a little less estery and obviously belgian than expected, somewhat cooler or longer ferment than maybe i was thinking, but i like it being reserved, this would not be good if it were phenolic and its not, so a cool and subtle approach to this yeast. pretty good malt depth here too, a little darker than many, but short of roasty, a molasses note, fig, and maple to me. lots of whiskey too, which might bulldoze some of the belgian yeast nuance, but the wood is awesome in here, light barrel char and vanilla in the mix, generic sweetness, and light spicy notes from the yeast still pushing through, really neat idea for a beer. lots of bourbon in the flavor and plenty of alcohol too, its not as hot as it could be at this strength, but its certainly evident at the same time. light spicy middle ranging at times from mulled wine and coziness to white pepper, coriander, and more traditional belgian notes, but there seems to be some spiciness from the whiskey too. the oak mellows it nicely, the malt is dense and earthy and well concentrated, and i think overall this comes together very well, even if its almost mandatorily a small doses drink. unique in a space where everyone is trying to make the same barleywine lately, the belgian yeast adds a cool quality and also maybe dries this out a little more than an english strain might, at least it seems that way here. should age super well too!
May 11, 2023
Rated: 3.85 by vfgccp from New York

Oct 24, 2022
Rated: 3.9 by mattmarka1 from Minnesota

Sep 23, 2022
Photo of stevoj
Reviewed by stevoj from Idaho

4.26/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
12oz bottle from Tavour. Dark brown pour, ring of fine beige head. Malty, aroma, sweet, chocolate, cinnamon. Sweet taste, molasses, malty, chocolate and light bourbon notes. Very smooth for 13%.
Sep 13, 2022
Photo of Captain69
Rated by Captain69 from Illinois

4.19/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
Aug 25, 2022
Rated: 4.28 by MJSFS from Florida

Mar 14, 2022
Photo of Alieniloquium
Reviewed by Alieniloquium from Florida

4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
650 mL bottle. Murky and gross brown that looks flat until a few bubbles well up as it settles. Smells of brown sugar, whiskey, aggressive hops, and some sweet fruitiness. Tastes of hops, brown sugar, oak, sweet dark fruits, bourbon and oak in the back end. Heavy and strong, but never cloying or sweet. Excellent.
Nov 20, 2021
Photo of zeff80
Reviewed by zeff80 from Missouri

4.24/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
On draft. Poured out a clear, golden amber color with a small, tan head of bubbly foam. It left sudsy trails of lace on the glass. It smelled of roasted malt, toffee, bourbon, oak and vanilla notes. Sweet toffee, caramel and malty taste with a kick of bourbon and oak.
Aug 04, 2021
Rated: 3.75 by QuintusHorace from California

Jun 24, 2021
Rated: 4.25 by Dharmelink from Wisconsin

Mar 22, 2021
Photo of metter98
Reviewed by metter98 from New York

4.24/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
A: The beer is very dark brown in color and has hints of reddish hues when it is held up to a bright light. It poured with a short dark beige head that left a narrow collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of bourbon from the barrel aging are present in the nose along with notes of dark fruits and oak and hints of molasses.
T: The taste follows the smell and has a bit stronger flavors of dark fruits. There is lots of oaky vanilla from the barrel aging along with some additional hints of toffee.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied on the palate and has a good amount of warming from the alcohol in the finish.
O: I really enjoyed both the smell and taste of this beer, especially with the combination of bourbon, vanilla, and toffee flavors in the taste. The alcohol is mostly noticeable in the mouthfeel but not in the taste so it is rather drinkable for a beer that is 13% abv.

Serving type: bottle
Mar 17, 2021
Photo of DIM
Reviewed by DIM from Pennsylvania

4.28/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
This was interesting and lovely and enjoyable. Shared with a friend over a mutually poorly played a game of chess that I lost. My five year old beat him afterward. So yeah, we're that good.

Plenty of fruity esters and sugary sweetness, but tasted blind I wouldn't have specified Belgian yeast esters or candi sugar. I tasted stone fruit, toffee, smooth bourbon, mellow vanilla, and a trace of oaky bourbon.

quite a treat, I should have bought more than one bottle.
Mar 16, 2021
Photo of Treyliff
Reviewed by Treyliff from West Virginia

4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
2015 Vintage
22oz bottle poured into a snifter

A- pours dark brown in color with a one-finger creamy khaki head that has good retention before settling into a thin film, leaving some lacing behind

S- there's a distinct fruity and spicy yeast note on the nose, giving aromas of raisins, figs & pepper. Perhaps that why it's a 'Belgian style' barleywine. Undertones of brown sugar, caramel, leather and plenty of oaky bourbon that gives light notes of vanilla

T- sweet and malty initially with notes of caramel, toffee and molasses. Mid-palate gives an array of dark fruits; stewed figs, raisins, plums, even a bit of blueberry. Faded earthy hops and peppery yeast on the finish, as the bourbon barrel starts to make a presence, adding oaky notes. More sweet dark fruits on the linger

M- medium body with moderate carbonation leads to a creamy mouthfeel that continues into a silky and velvety, slightly warming finish

O- super sweet but not cloying, an enjoyable sipper
Feb 27, 2021
Rated: 4.27 by smithj4 from New York

Jan 18, 2021
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Rated by JCB1711 from Alaska

4.62/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
One of my favorite seasonal released out of MSBC. Probably the best part of the incoming winter in Anchorage.
Jan 10, 2021
Rated: 4.25 by fstone from California

Jan 08, 2021
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Reviewed by REVZEB from Illinois

4.43/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Dark brown opaque body with a mushroom head that fades into a ring. Smell captures the bourbon, molasses, and wood of the barrel, melding it with huge dark fruit and toffee. Taste is a unique barleywine experience while staying true to the stylistic flavor profile: huge plum, fig, barley, toffee and molasses, with bourbon depths, wood, and vanilla layering in. The palate beautifully lifts through the sips, starting dark and syrupy and ending lighter, full yet almost airy in a way, with a nectar coursing through. Warm and smooth, hides booze well. A fresh take on the english beautiful barleywine. The wife liked it
Jul 16, 2020
Rated: 4 by Birdlegs from Washington

Jun 11, 2020
Rated: 4.25 by paulish from New York

May 07, 2020
Termination Dust from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 93 out of 100 with 108 ratings