Arctic Devil Barley Wine | Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Arctic Devil Barley WineArctic Devil Barley Wine
BA SCORE
4.36/5
1,347 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:
#354
Reviews:
382
Ratings:
1,347
pDev:
8.03%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
979
Gots:
311
Trade:
32
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,347 |  Reviews: 382
Photo of FalconCount
4.34/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Erik-P
4.02/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Bilco
4.54/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of ha-sheem
4.25/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

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

Photo of OrangeMen
4.55/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2015 vintage
~1 year from bottling date

Appearance- Pours a dark amber, mahogany color, deep red hues. Fairly transparent, but slightly murky. Half finger thick, off white colored head, creamy. Alcohol legs coat glass w/ some small spotty head lacing.

Aroma- Rich maltiness, tons of dark fruit sweetness, predominantly dark cherries, plums, red wine grapes. Dry oak barrel, bourbon sweetness. Caramel, vanilla, toffee sweetness.

Taste- Dark fruits, lots of dark cherries, plums, booze soaked raisins. Intense rich malts, caramel, toffee, maple sweetness. Waves of bourbon, spicy oak barrel, tawny port notes, vanilla, and coconut.

Feel- Medium to full bodied, very sweet and creamy smooth. Lower carbonation, fluffy and smooth.

Overall- Intense richness interwoven with wonderful barrel notes and bourbon. Dark fruits are very forward, lots of cherry sweetness carries throughout. Barrel notes are very complex and add a real nice depth of flavor to the beer. Very enjoyable sipper.

 987 characters

Photo of Boilerup
4.33/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of TboneRN
4.31/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Damian
4.31/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Drank from a 22 fl.oz./1 pint 6 fl.oz. bottle purchased at DeLaurenti Specialty Food & Wine, Seattle, WA
1/18/15
Served in a snifter

Review #1275

Nearly clear, chestnut-mahogany appearance. The beer appeared rather still in the glass. A thin, fizzy film of khaki colored froth coated the liquid briefly before it dissolved. No lacing whatsoever.

The nose was surprisingly nondescript initially. Somewhat malty and sweet. Bit of maple. Slightly boozy. Some fruitiness came forth as the beer sat. Dark fruits for sure. Plums and raisins were noticeable. With time, the aroma definitely improved. Rich port-like notes appeared. More dark fruit intensity and sweetness too.

The flavor profile was very similar to the nose. Malty and sweet up front. Loads of rich caramel, toffee and maple notes. Fruity. Raisins and plums were apparent. Somewhat spicy. Quite boozy on the finish. For a 13-plus percent ABV beer, however, the alcohol was surprisingly restrained. Sweet plum, raisin and brown sugar notes lingered after the swallow. Like the nose, the flavor profile became more complex with time. Rich port and rum-like notes came forth. The dark fruits intensified as well.

The mouthfeel was quite syrupy. Medium bodied for the style. The liquid contained a light, frothy effervescence that turned fluffy on the palate. After a few sips, the sugars in the beer left a sticky film on my lips.

Arctic Devil Barkeywine has been on my "wants" list for quite a while and I am really glad I finally had a chance to try it. Although the the nose and the flavor both seemed somewhat more muted than I anticipated, I can see how people might have flipped out over this beer five or ten years ago.

 1,689 characters

Photo of gshak
4.3/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2015 bottle at fridge temperature into a corsendonk tulip.
A - Murky brown, with ruby highlights. No head to speak of, a faint ring of bubbles towards the edge of the glass.
S - Muted aromas of dark fruit, and malt. Raisins, prunes and jaggery noted.
T - Starts sweet with dark fruits, raisins and brown sugar. The barrel aging is definitely noted on the palate, with bourbon heat and flavor noticed throughout the sip. Backend has some bitterness. This is an excellent sipper.
M - Medium-heavy, with an oily feel, leaves behind stickiness on the lips. This is for sure a malt-forward beer with some excellent barrel influences.
O - Recommended as one of the best examples of a barrel-aged old ale. Not too far off the Sucaba territory or the Pelican MoAS.

 757 characters

Photo of CoreyC
4.45/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

two year old bottle
A - light brown with nice head which dissipates quickly
S - Very good, the perfect sweet dark fruit EB aroma
T - Nice dark fruit and maltiness, but not as sweet as I would have expected/wanted
M - nice, sticky
O - Very good, but also very expensive

 268 characters

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

Photo of Natesquatch
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.59/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- The beer poured a dark murky brown color with off-white bubbkes crowning the glass.

Smell - The malty goodness that is the nose of a barleywine is here. Sweet malts and dark fruit are noted.

Taste - Sweet dark fruits and malts come to the front. Nutty fruit, raisins, leather, oak, cranberries, and caramel are all present. Some of these notes are better defined as it warms. The finish comes in a pleasant warming sensation.

Mouthfeel - Smooth sticky malts define the mouthfeel.

Overall - The 2 years of cellar made a good beer great!

 555 characters

Photo of brians52
4.25/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Mpontiakos
5/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of TheBlueJerzzzz
4.34/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Hawkfish
4.41/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Radcpa
4.74/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Dark brown appearance with little head and just the right amount of carbonation. The combination of bourbon barrel aged and brandy wine ale is excellent

 152 characters

Photo of Birdlegs
4.25/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of paulish
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of bmeehan
3.47/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

This beer is strong as hell. You expect that from a barleywine and from a beer that's 13.4% ABV, but this is strong behind that. I smell raisins and taste them too, and while it's nice to sip, it's just a little too overpowering to love.

 237 characters

Photo of Eternal218
3.9/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of wvsabbath
4.31/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Conradist
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Arctic Devil Barley Wine from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.36 out of 5 with 1,347 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.