Decadence 2010 English-Style Old Ale | AleSmith Brewing Company

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Decadence 2010 English-Style Old AleDecadence 2010 English-Style Old Ale
Very Good
209 Ratings
Decadence 2010 English-Style Old AleDecadence 2010 English-Style Old Ale

Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: English Old Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Same recipe as Decadence 2005.

Added by jerz on 06-14-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 209 |  Reviews: 139
Reviews by hawkmage:
Photo of hawkmage
3.5/5  rDev -12.1%

More User Reviews:
Photo of RoyalT
4.05/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance – This Old Ale poured a muddy brown in color with some light orangish highlights. The head on this 11% ABV anniversary ale was short and sweet.

Smell – Oh, this ale just reeks of alcohol and wood. There are some good malts in there I’m sure, and I can actually pick up some of the fruits like grapes and dates, but the wood and booze really do dominate. Cool.

Taste – Kapow! The anvil picture on the bottle says it all. The wood and alcohol remind me of Old Woody. They are big and heavy handed, trumping any sort of malt profile that may be in the ale. The “sherry or port-like” description from the BJCP really fits here. It’s more like a hearty sherry with hints of tawny port.

Mouthfeel – This is a bit fuller than medium-bodied with some stinging alcohol warmth that gets you buzzing after the first sip.

Drinkability – This is a hardcore version of the style well worthy of the 10th anniversary moniker.

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Photo of warnerry
4/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of magictrokini
4.42/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours clear brown, with a slight cream head. Aroma is heavy with chocolate malts, alcohol, and candied fruits. Figs and cherries are faint and boozy. Taste is thick with sweet malts. Chocolate and toffee blend with the fruit, to form a slightly chocolate-covered-cherry candy taste up front. The cherries and caramel linger. Finishes with a slow and sticky alcohol burn, cognac flavor, without the dried fruit. Viscous mouthfeel. Easily drinkable, while maintaining complexity.

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Photo of kingcrowing
3.65/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle poured into a sampler.

Pours a nice amber brown with a small brown head. Nose is a bit sweet and malty. Very small light brown head.

Taste is sweet, rich and quite tasty. Decent Mouthfeel but a bit light.Its very tasty and quite drinkable. Overall its quite good.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.36/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Dark red edged hues, light brown, beer looked like a mild stout was part of its blend. Aroma was strongly of alcohol, after that there was a heady breadyness to it, followed by raisin and alcohol soaked prunes.

Taste, again, very strong, very hot, and then layer upon layer of flavor, good roasted malt flavor, earthy bitterness, lots of raisin and toffee flavor, dark sugar type of sweetness. Very much what complex old ales are about, distinguished from their barleywine by the complexity and lack of hops. I think I like the barleywine better, it has many of the old ale characteristics without the heat, dark fruit, but has some hopping.

I might be a bigger fan of this with more age on it, thanks to whomever at Sourfest that was pouring this.

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Photo of OStrungT
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a gloden brown with a brownish orange head. The head fades slowly leaving a decent amount of laces. When held up to the light, see a deep ruby tint. It has a malty aroma. I an detect the alcohol in the aroma. I also detect some molasses. It sort of smells like a barley wine. I detect very little in the way of hop aroma. This beer tastes like a mild barley wine. Not as aggressive, but I taste some similarities. The alcohol is very present in the flavor. It slightly warms my throat on the way down. It tastes malty and sweet. It is a little thinner than a barley wine. It goes down smooth, very smooth. The flavor is not as aggressive as you would think form the alcohol content. I think this beer would probably not make a very good session beer because of the high alcohol content. However, with the mild flavor, it might be an all nighter.

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Photo of pwoods
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

FtownThrowDown cracked this bad boy.

A: Murky, dirty brown. Not much head left but some decent lacing.

S: great mellowed alcohol and deep, rich malts.

T/M: Great rich and deeply but pleasantly sweet malts. A bitnjuttu and buttery. Deep and mellowed alcohol adds great depth. Maybe a touch oxidized but still enjoyable. Body is nearly full and nice and smooth.

D: 11% is pretty suprising but still drinks nice and easy.

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Photo of Brenden
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A deep, dark brownish-red brew shines a fiery red in the light. A tan head is sturdy, remaining at nearly one finger in height for a while. Lacing is left in thin, leggy rings nearly to the bottom of the glass.
The aroma showcases a sweet malt backbone with some strength to it. I expect a bit of alcohol, which I get, and the mixture of sweetness includes dark fruits, toffee, caramel, and something like a blend of figs/brown sugar. I do get a bit of grains along with it all.
This is as sweet as I expect with a very well-masked heat that's more a boozy flavor that adds some complexity. What I don't expect and am pleasantly surprised to find is a hops bitterness that rolls off the sweetness. This is a tasty beer with more balance than many old ales can manage.
The body is medium with a very crisp feel that mingles with a smoothness without losing the gentle bite and flows very nicely.
I'm very glad I got a chance to try this one; a very tasty beer and a great example of the style.

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Photo of Sammy
3.97/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A knock-you-on-the-rear big beer. Big mouth feel,great fruitiness, surprisingly hoppy.A real American take on this style, more of an American strong ale. I would like to drink more as so tasty but booze bill took its toll on us. Share with friends!
Gotten in trade.

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Photo of prototypic
3.67/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The 2010 Decadence release is a very dark copper or amber color. It's clear, and backlighting shows really nice scarlet highlights throughout. A vanilla colored head tops it. It rises to about a finger in depth before falling to a surface covering quickly. It held there for a bit, and left a relatively light, sticky web of lace trailing down the glass.

The nose is good. It kicks off with a wealth of caramel malt. It definitely smells a little sweet. There's a little cocoa-esque chocolate malt in the mix as well. It has a strong fruit presence that consists of light cherry, raisin, and fig. Yeast is a little noticeable. Alcohol is there, but doesn't smell too strong. Not 11% strong anyway. It's not exactly complicated, but it smells good.

The flavor is not quite as good, but it's a close call. It has a nice base of caramel and chocolate malts. The caramel variety is the stronger of the two. The cocoa flavor is subtle, but very nice. Fruit flavors of raisin, cherry, fig, plum, and apple are all present in some degree. They add nice depth. There's an acidic quality to it that's very light and subtle. It has a nice effect, and I like it. Alcohol is definitely noticeable in flavor. Definitely more noticeable than it should be. Perhaps I should've let this one age a little longer. Finishes fruit and boozy.

This one has medium body that leans toward full with a little warming. Carbonation is light and it feels smooth. Not quite creamy, but smooth. Drinkability is above average. The flavor's pretty good, but it is big and boozy. A 750 is a bit much.

I'm a big Alesmith fan. Always have been. The 2010 Decadence release is pretty good, but doesn't quite live up to Alesmith's usual prestige. The biggest problem is that it's way too boozy. It's far more distracting than it should be. Maybe it just needed a little more age. Who knows? It's definitely worth a try, but it isn't Alesmith's best.

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Photo of hooliganlife
3.27/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

2010 vintage

pours deep brown, creamy head. bit of a cola look.

deep dark fruit, some roasted nuts and toffee. sweet malt.

a bit oxidized, flat sweet malt and faint toffee and butterscotch. not a lot going on here.

nice smooth body, mild to moderate bite. bit of a dry finish.

ehhh past its prime.

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Photo of nickd717
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle from K&L Redwood City.

Pours a hazy medium brown color with a well-formed light tan head.

The aroma has loads of toffee and dark fruit notes, with a little spice. Definitely smells like an English-style beer.

The flavor is sweet, as it should be, with huge notes of toffee, caramel, and toast. Sugar plums, raisins, and dates as well, with spices, especially nutmeg.

Fairly full-bodied and a little syrupy even, with soft carbonation.

Another well-done beer from AleSmith, who very rarely misses the mark. Paired well with a cigar.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.99/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance - Murky brown. Small khaki head. Wispy with a small collar.

Smell - Really nice. Oxidization has set in, but it's sherry not cardboard and I like that in this style. Caramel malt and even a tinge of grapefruit hop still there.

Taste - Amazing, I still get hops. Grapefruit bite right up front before the brown sugar malt takes over. A touch oxidized, again, with sherry flavors. Toffee and slightly bitter in finish.

Mouthfeel - Thick, but not too sugary. The oxidation is very nice. Low carbonation.

Overall - Age seems to have done this well. I don't know about the style, though. I would have pegged it as an American Barleywine.

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Photo of CharlesDarwin
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Originally reviewed on August 1, 2006. 750mL Bottle. This is a celebration beer, for many reasons. It’s my 600th rate. The ratebeerian who sent me this beer just celebrated his first anniversary for a wedding that I was the best man at, a year ago. Today is the first day of August, marking the autumnal swing of the avian world, where birds begin to head south. Friday, it’s my birthday. So this Anniversary Ale, of epic celebratory proportions is the perfect choice to mark all these occasions! I undress the bottle of its’ gold foil crown and pop the top. A light psst, then the silky pour into a goblet. Immeadiately, rich aged brandy soaked fruits tickle my nostrils. There’s incredible maturity in those alcohol tones, from aged bourbon black cake to maciated figs in cognac. Exotic dessert spices dance on the surface and waft gently up the nose. Pineapple, pound cake and a whole slew of indescribable nuanced characters erupt from the snifter. The pour is a fiery core of mostly clear ruby-hued liquors, with golden-orange fringes, a light carbonation, a fine mist of yeast particles across the beer and a lacy edge of tawny head. On the tounge, a elicitation of the aroma, with perky pineapple candies, rich creamed malts, replete with a touch of Marakesh spice and squeezed raisin juice. The alcohols unleash a fiery blast of warmth into the humours, but I’m not taken aback, only encouraged and pleased with the gentle heat and the sophistication it brings. In the middle, these fires meld with a tart candied lemon rind and the whole wash of sugary and creamy malt characters, in a heavenly blend of various sugars and grains. This is heavly refined. In the backend, there’s a light bite of British hop bite, but only so much to create balance, without overpowering what an Old Ale should be. Damn, I love balance. Here, I’m not taken aback by the lack of carbonation, or the alcoholic fury. This beer is worthy to be something to celebrate with any time. Later, I’ll use it as a deglazing liquid for butter sauteed nectarines and rainier cherries, and it will be delicious.

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Photo of HalfFull
3.66/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a medium brown into a wine glass, sporting half an inch of creamy tan foam. Clear and crimson in the light, the pour offers good retention and soapy lacing.

Bit of cherry and fig on the nose along with some light hops. Offers a lot of moderately complex barleywine characteristics to the malt profile along with some alcohol notes, particularly after fresh agitation; yet nothing really grabs you either.

Flavor offers a viscous sweetness with lots of caramel and toffee notes. Body thins a bit on the swallow, yielding light fruit notes noted on the aroma, and finishes with a flash of brown sugar and spice which lingers moderately.

Overall a bit too uniform in nature to be highly memorable, not overly complex. And yet without any drawbacks

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Photo of Gmann
3.82/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Out of a 750ml foiled and capped bottle. Pours a solid brown color with some honey highlights; a short yet tight khaki colored head that settles into a light ring. The aroma is of a dark malt with a mature grape presence, cherry, honey, fig, and prunes. The flavor starts off with a dry bitter chocolate then quickly transitions to prunes and figs, some brown sugar and a touch of boozy raisins. The olde ale seems to have some roasted malt to help offset the dark fruit sweetness. The feel is moderate with semi-soft carbonation; generally sweet but has a bitter balance to it. The ABV does peek through a tad but for the most part is well hidden. A good old ale, not great. The depth of flavors just not there and aging won't really help. The slight ABV burn will mellow and more of the prune and fig flavors will come out but the beer seems to be lacking that secondary flavor profile that makes a good old ale.

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Photo of Beertracker
4.45/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

AleSmith's Decadence Anniversary Ale is best served at cellar temperatures (50-55F) in a "commemorative" logo glass or a large brandy snifter. This potent elixir pours up smart & simple with just the perfect amount of carbonation. The gorgeously, inviting chestnut-ruby brown body is capped nicely with a small, persistent, cream colored head. This beauty even shows a bit of leg. The big, sweet caramel (e.g. caramel apple, toffee bits/molasses chips, muscovado sugar) aroma is wonderfully complex with hints of Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla, Frangelico & Madeira. The flavor starts off luciously rich & somewhat chewy with lots of burnt caramel, toasted nuttiness and dried fruit. The bitterness never quite seems to catch-up to the huge maltiness, but the warming alcohol plays nicely into the finish. This chewy, full-bodied old ale carries plenty of character & warmth to bring color to any occasion. Enjoy this special vintage now or cellar for a special occasion. Here's to a "Decade of Decadence!"

CHEERS! Beertracker

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Photo of eat
5/5  rDev +25.6%

Photo of GRG1313
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of emerge077
3.71/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown, copious foam with lasting coverage. Opaque and impenetrable.

Smells like old shit. Bread dough and toffee with a side of oxidation. Sweet pastry.

Tastes like heavy oxidized nutty malt, creamy and smooth, slightly creamy lactic toffee and mild bitterness. Its alright, other Alesmith beers are much better.

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Photo of Jredner
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma was spicy with lots of fruit cake aroma and rich malts...and lots of alcohol. Pour was hazy reddish brown with a smallish fast fading head. Flavor was sweet and malty with lots of spiced rum/fruit cake flavors that mirroed the aroma. Not quite as deep and complex as other Alesmith beers, but still fantastic.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.18/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: Poured a slightly cloudy amber color ale with a large frothy head with good retention and excellent lacing. Aroma of caramelized malt with residual sugar notes and lightly dry fruits notes. Taste is a great balanced mix between some dry fruits and caramel malt with light residual sugar. This one almost taste like an English barleywine and hops do not play a dominant roles. Body is about average with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Very well brewed and more balanced then most other beers form this brewer.

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Photo of CRJMellor
4.02/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep ark amber, red, mahogany and brown concoction with a fairly large ecru head. Nice amount of lace forms and stays throughout the drink.
Aroma of heavy caramel, some chocolate, figs and does of grain alcohol.
Flavor is fairly intensely sweet to start with a hint of roasted bitterness in the middle before finishing with a restrained but powerful alcoholic punhc.
Mouthfeel is big with just a wee bit too much "hot" alcohol pop. I think this will settle down with some aging.
Drinkability was solid. Some serious aging will make this Old Ale worth re-visiting in about '08 or '09.

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

Snagged a couple... one to try now fresh...

- Rich dark molasses brown brew... clear, thick off white head quickly down to a thin layer on top with a bit of a ring.

- Huge toffee caramel candied malt notes... roasty... sweet, molasses, brown sugar.. slight earthiness.. grassy... creamy buttery...

- Sweet decadence it is... toffee, brown sugar.. roasted caramel.. slightly woody and bourbon-like... touch of grassy bitterness... some earthy highlights....

- Creamy feel, medium bodied.. slightly drying and chewy sticky.

- Overall very smooth... enjoying at about cellar temp.. and the heat doesn't really show up until it has gone all the way down. Hits the head instantly after the first gulp. Great flavors and overall a stellar beer.

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Decadence 2010 English-Style Old Ale from AleSmith Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.98 out of 5 with 209 ratings