Old Numbskull | AleSmith Brewing Company

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Old NumbskullOld Numbskull
BA SCORE
4.12/5
Exceptional
1,496 Ratings
Old NumbskullOld Numbskull
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company
California, United States
alesmith.com

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by xlperro on 02-14-2002

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#2,048
Reviews:
520
Ratings:
1,496
pDev:
9.47%
Bros Score:
3.93
 
 
Wants:
213
Gots:
367
Trade:
14
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,496 |  Reviews: 520
Photo of Ozzylizard
3.37/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

$ 17.70 (Including shipping)/capped 750 mL bottle ($ 0.697/oz) from Tavour, Seattle, WA.
Bottle undated. Stored at 42 degrees prior to consumption and served at 59 degrees in a hand-washed and hand-dried Jester King snifter.
Appearance – 4.25.
Body – Dark amber, hazy. When held to the light, it becomes translucently medium amber.
Head – Large (Maximum 6.4 cm, controlled center pour), medium density, tan, average retention, diminishing to an irregular three to five mm ring and a thin complete layer with a rocky island.
Lacing – Poor. Just a couple of drag marks as the level drops.
First pour – Honey-amber, clear.
Aroma – 4 - Caramel malt. Lasts.
Flavor – 3 – Begins slightly sweet with caramel; the middle and the end are the same. The aftertaste has an unexpected slight metallic bitterness which hangs on. And on. And on. No alcohol (11% ABV), no diacetyl, no dimethylsulfide. No gastric warming.
Palate – 3- Medium, creamy, lively carbonation.
Impression and summation – 3.25 – Basically, a one-trick pony until the metallic aftertaste hits. The alcohol is well-hidden, but the metallic ending precludes consuming mass quantities. A bit of diacetyl would have gone well with the caramel. Sorry. This is an expensive drain pour.

 1,275 characters

Photo of Gagnonsux
4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of GarrettB
3.75/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

May 15th, 2015 - Alesmith shows off how much nitro can change the face and character of a beer in their nitro Old Numbskull. Still dark and somber in the glass, the aroma is now twangy, grassy and lemony, with an herbal edge that really catches me off guard. The flavor has also gone weird. Its perky and acidic here too, beginning with a bright strawberry sweetness and sunsetting into a deep cherry lollipop sugar bomb. This sweet aftertaste is somewhat refreshed and lifted by fruitier notes of Fuji apple and bordeaux grapes, which brings me back to what the original Numbskull tastes like.

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Photo of TheCrowsEye
4.05/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Bogdawg
4.13/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Devonking
4.18/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Tcsox
4.36/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.99/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Approximately 1 year of age on this bottle.

Pours a beautiful butterscotch blonde-caramel color with a lovely head of 3 fingers, egg foam color. Lots of lace left behind as the head recedes.

Beautiful fruity and caramel aromas waft to the nose, with notes of vinous grape, popcorn ball, butterscotch, caramel, slight chocolate, and the same yeast of Speedway.; Slight smokiness, mouth-watering.

Flavor brings much more bitterness than the nose would suggest; with some of those grape notes giving off a white wine-meets-sauvignon flavor, with smokey caramel lingering in the background and alcohol heat lapping it at its heels. Hints of fruitcake develop as it's left to rest on the palate, with hints of raisins. That's the good. The bad is that it indeed tastes like oxidized hops, like someone aged a 120 minute in the sunlight for a year. Some onion and garbage flavors too.

Feel is velvety, then leathery, then hot, and dries out considerably on the finish. Carbonation is medium-light.

Overall, it's a great beer until it hits your lips. It's not something I'm overly excited about. The more I drink it the more it tastes like old oxidized hops or a very poorly aged 120 minute. Probably would not revisit.

 1,222 characters

Photo of rspauldi
3.65/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of AD_PNW
4.31/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle date: 2/4/16

Malty and spicy. Hops are are very evident, though they take a background to the complex maltiness of this brew. Bready and toasty with heavy raisin and fig type flavors. A little boozy, even after the two years of aging. The body is medium, coating and warming. Wonderful brew. Looking forward to drinking this again. The bottle shop down the street had five bottles of this vintage.

 405 characters

Photo of stevoj
3.96/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle from Ale Arsenal. Hazy, copper pour with bubbly ring of beige head. Caramel on the aroma, bready malts. Taste amplifies the caramel, mildly sweet, strong too. Fruitcake, raisins and molasses. Dries out a bit in the finish. I’ll be feeling this tomorrow.

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Photo of Richie_C_Johnson
4.19/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of schopenhauerale
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of TheBeerbarian
3.51/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of trevorpost
3.94/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of mmilyko
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Taybeh
4.35/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From a 750 ml bottle into a little Steel Toe snifter, this pours a beautiful slightly magical reddish copper with a decent head and some retention...the color is kind of bewitching. Nose is a whole lot of different kinds of sweet: some chewy caramel, some light molasses, some warm booziness. Taste is all of that but even more, with some additional dark fruitiness (maybe figs) and some biscuity malts, too. Also a little edge of earthy hoppy sweetness, too. Very smooth but very rich and layered. Excellent stuff.

 520 characters

Photo of Duncian
3.99/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Mebuzzard
4.04/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of tp1962
5/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

One of the best Barleywines I’ve tasted. It’s definitely not an everyday beer for myself but great to share with friends who appreciate a great Barleywine!

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Photo of Ciocanelu
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Clear amber color with beige head. Aroma has caramelized malt and earthy, resiny , woody hop notes. Taste is really well balanced with rich, complex malts and earthy hop bitterness. Medium body, a bit sticky, soft carbonation. A great american style barleywine.

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Photo of nwhittin
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of liquorpig
4.37/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of dbauer
4.18/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Everydayoff
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle poured into a snifter. Bottled Nov-2015, drank Dec-2017.

Mildly hazed with deep ruby copper color, the pour builds up massive silky light brown head that withstands with great retention before slowly subsiding to an everlasting fluffy layer on the surface and leaving lots of sticky lace here and there.

Full of malt through both the aroma and taste, I got obviously creamy smoothness layer as well as malty sweetness, also caramel, toffee, brown sugar, molasses, toasted malt, burnt bread, and biscuit. Note of ripe dark fruit in kind of fig and raisin too as a complex layer together with the assertive hop profile of some fruitiness, peppery spice, and long-lasting earthy yet leafty bitterness. Of course, the booze is there with its pungent spiciness but who really cares? The end and aftertaste is lingering with hop bitterness, big malty sweetness, and some alcohol.

The body is rather full with smooth mouthfeel and mild to moderate carbonation through the palate. The feeling is well-rounded and just right to carry all the things well. Finish is very dry.

Kneel to this malty monster with its uncompromising booziness in contrast with the wide varieties of malt yet with earthy hop, it is great and can be a benchmark of what American Barleywine is all about.

 1,286 characters

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Old Numbskull from AleSmith Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.12 out of 5 with 1,496 ratings