Arctic Devil Barley Wine | Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

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Arctic Devil Barley WineArctic Devil Barley Wine
BA SCORE
4.36/5
Outstanding
1,363 Ratings
Arctic Devil Barley WineArctic Devil Barley Wine
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Alaska, United States
midnightsunbrewing.com

Style: English Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.20%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Arctic Devil Barley Wine, aptly named after the ferocious wolverine of the north, is an English-style (meaning malt-inclined) barley wine. Though the recipe and process for Arctic Devil have evolved over the years, it is brewed once a year then aged in oak barrels for several months before the entire batch is blended, bottled and released.

In its youth, Arctic Devil gnarls and snarls its way across the palate. Containing this beast of a beer for long periods in oak barrels--some having previously aged port, wine or whiskey--tames the unleashed malt and fierce hop flavors, melding and mellowing this powerful liquid into an incredible elixir worthy of a brewer's table.

Each annual batch of Arctic Devil Barley Wine represents the brewers' resolve to create an intriguing and sought-after barley wine by precisely brewing to well-designed specifications, carefully selecting the type and combination of barrels to use for aging, and meticulously checking the beer as it ages. Distinct nuance and complexity are contributed by the wood's previous tenants, resulting in unique flavor profiles in each batch that continue to change over time. We invite you to savor Arctic Devil Barley Wine upon its release then cellar some for future enjoyment.

20 IBU

Added by Todd on 03-24-2005

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#367
Reviews:
389
Ratings:
1,363
pDev:
8.03%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
979
Gots:
310
Trade:
33
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,363 |  Reviews: 389
Photo of eire
4.13/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Photo of oldsailor
4.13/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of Alieniloquium
4.14/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bottle at City Beer. Poured into a snifter. 2010 bottle.

Appearance - No head. Murky brown with some reddish flecks. Ring of foam around the surface.

Smell - Oak is prominent. Bourbon and vanilla. Low barrel character next to other barreled barley wines, but it's nice. Slightly oxidized, but it's beneficial. Earthy hops join the caramel.

Taste - Even less barrel, but it's still nice. Caramel mostly, but oak and vanilla are close behind. Bourbon and oxidation blend in. Earthy finish. A little bitter.

Mouthfeel - Boozy, but I wouldn't guess 13.4%. Low carbonation. Bitter. Maybe even a bit thin and watery as the flavors drop off.

Overall - Excellent flavors. The oxidation is nice. The only downfall is the mouthfeel. Too thin in the finish.

 758 characters

Photo of StoutSnob40
4.14/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of mykie73
4.15/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

a) Burgandy caramel, burnt amber color with small lacing

s) Complex. red apples, cherries, hint of figs, vanilla, toffee

t) delicious; tastes like it smells but with more toffee. lingering after taste. reminds me of eating a twix bar in away. can not taste the alcohol at all.

f) so smooth, does not coat mouth, great feel.

d) very drinkable. A spendy beer at $15 a pop so something you bring out for a special treat. Very happy that this beer is very available in Oregon. Tremendous Barley Wine.

 500 characters

Photo of hopdog
4.15/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled date of November '04.

Poured a dark and cloudy brown color with a small off white head. Aromas of vanilla, dark fruits and wood. Tastes of vanilla, dark fruits, brown sugar, and molasses. Sweet. Light alcohol in the finish. Overall a very tasty Barley Wine.

Notes from 4/15/05

 287 characters

Photo of TomMorris
4.15/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Gaddabble
4.15/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of rudzud
4.15/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Received in a trade 2011 Vintage.

A - Poured into my Duvel tulip a nice crystal clear deep coppery mahogany hue with a nice one finger off white head that fades to leave a nice thin blanket.

S - Nice sweet (but not too sweet) malts and soft oak with good whiskey notes. Quite faint throughout.

T - Slightly hot, but to be expected. Softer, sweet malts light caramel and toffee, gentle oak and whiskey. Some nice intermingling but again its all rather light with some alcohol in the background.

M - Mouthfeel is spot on. Nicely carbonated here with those prickly bubbles keeping it up off the tongue. As it warms though it gets a bit thin.

O - Overall this was a good barleywine. Not great, just good. Slightly disappointed here, for the trouble it is to get Anchorage brews I had higher expectations for this one. There are readily available barleywines on the market I can get at a fraction.

 897 characters

Photo of Kevinpitts
4.15/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of TmKeisySC
4.15/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of JC333
4.16/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Rizzy17
4.16/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Kegatron
4.17/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle into a couple of snifters. 2007 vintage. 10% ABV.

Pours a ruddy brown, with a thin sudsy head of light mocha foam. This whips up a rich cascade up onto the sides of the glass, leaving back thick swathes of lacing. The aroma is quite dense and flavorful with notes of cocoa, molasses, oak, vanilla, and then some tea-like qualities that alternate between being tannic and herbal feeling in the nose.

The taste is equally robust, with heavy flavors of brown sugar, chocolate, molasses, green tannins, and then notes of roast and some dark fruit on the back. There is some heavy oxidation going on with this, which combos with the more woody character that is present to leave this VERY dry on the finish. Honestly, one of the driest that I’ve felt on a beer in a long time. The mouthfeel is full bodied and sharp up front which then gives way to more of a chewy creaminess along the back. This is hugely smooth for the size, with the alcohol contributing some added sweetness and spice to the profiles but not any real heat.

This was nice and aged very well, with that oxidation that was present mostly complimenting the other flavors and only got to be mildly distracting in spots. This was very rich and smooth overall though and I was glad that I finally found a proper time to open this guy. Now I just need to find a fresh bottle to compare…

 1,367 characters

Photo of osubeav2003
4.17/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of MisfitIK-9
4.17/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of grittybrews
4.17/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 bottle, opened 10/2011. Poured a ruddy brownish orange with a small eggshell head. Sweet, sticky aroma with caramel, dark fruit, and alcohol.

Moderate carbonation and a thick, syrupy mouthfeel. Huge flavors with sweet caramel malt, molasses, prune and dark fruit, and a hint of tobacco/smoke on the finish. Some muddled, bitter hops are in hiding in there as well.

Big flavors and definitely boozy but I wouldn't have pegged it at 13 percent. Solid barleywine.

 467 characters

Photo of Crosling
4.17/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark ruby. Wonderfully extracted caramel and chocolate malts in the nose, along with the barrel contribution which brings slight aromatics of cocunut, bourbon and wood. Fairly simple aroma but the flavor makes up for it. Chocolate covered raisin flavor with hints of caramel and oak and a touch of hops of the back of tonque. Full, coating flavor. A very good beer.

 365 characters

Photo of Pencible
4.17/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 vintage. This poured a slightly hazy ruby color with some tan head. It smelled like raisin and honey wheat and brown sugar, with a bit of copper hops and creamy yeast and alcohol. It tasted like toffee and brown sugar and alcohol, with some raisin and honey wheat. It was oily with a bit of carbonation, and had a bitter metallic aftertaste. Overall this was a solid English barleywine, with nice malty scent and taste and good body. It was still pretty potent even after a year of aging, so this is definitely a sipping beer. Whisky and oak flavors weren't very apparent, which was somewhat disappointing. But this is still a great brew and very enjoyable.

 662 characters

Photo of TheCuriograph
4.17/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of udubdawg
4.17/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of JayGreezy
4.18/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of tywhite
4.18/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of 2GOOFY
4.18/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of neenerzig
4.19/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Got a bomber bottle of this in March of 2016 when I went to Seattle, a few months before the law changed in Ohio and beer over 12% ABV could be legally sold here, so this was quite a find for me at the time. Brought the bomber back with me and aged it in my cellar until tonight. Poured into one of my tulip glasses, this beer pours a very dark copper color with an off-white/slightly tan colored head that's an inch thick when first poured that settles to a nice film layer of foam that covers most of the beer's surface along with a very thick ring lining the inside of the glass. Aromas of some toasted, biscuit caramel malts and toffee sweetness along with molasses and brown sugar and certainly a bit of alcohol. The taste is pretty much the same, with somewhat toasted, biscuit, caramel malt, toffee, caramel, and brown sugar sweetness along with some dark fruit notes of fig and plum. A bit of earthy hops gives the overall flavor profile some semblance of balance, but the sweetness certainly dominates, no question about it. There is of course also the taste of some alcohol, being that this is a 13.4% AVB beer. Has a somewhat crisp and slightly prickly, slightly oily and chewy, slightly smooth, medium to full bodied mouthfeel with moderate to heavy carbonation. Has a slightly astringent and somewhat dry finish and aftertaste. A pretty good beer all around, and glad I got a chance to try it.

Eric

 1,421 characters

Arctic Devil Barley Wine from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.36 out of 5 with 1,363 ratings