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Dominion Millennium Ale | Old Dominion Brewing Company

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Dominion Millennium AleDominion Millennium Ale
367 Ratings
Dominion Millennium AleDominion Millennium Ale

Brewed by:
Old Dominion Brewing Company
Delaware, United States

Style: English Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Millennium is brewed in the barley wine style to commemorate our 1000th batch of beer. Its generous hopping & bottle conditioning allow this beer to be cellared and enjoyed for many years.

Added by Todd on 08-11-2001

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Ratings: 367 |  Reviews: 262
Photo of JohnGalt1
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I got a couple of these and the Oaked version a while back from Vintage Cellars in Blackburg... I can't believe I've held on to this one for so long... Sharing this one a bit with Brenda... mine is poured into my my Delirium goblet and working while listening to Son Volt.

Nice enough 1" head.. descent lacing and a good cap.. the brew is a light copper.

Aroma is nice.. very full caramel and lesser toasted malt notes.. a small bit of applesauce.. Brenda says Rainier cherries but I don't get it...

Flavor is very pleasing.. just a well made Barleywine.. enough spicy hoppiness to move the malts forward and in the same front..that said, there is a bit of spicy alcohol doing the same. more toasty malts than the nose.. overall, this seems a bit "simple", but I am really liking it.. I enjoy the fact that this seems so easy drinking for such a big ABV beer.. the alcohol is fairly hidden.. the flavors are very well melded and plush.

Nice brew that I've had quite a few times over the years from my great friends in PA and VA.. This is actually the first time that I've settled down and just contemplated the merits..


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Photo of stirgy
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured out a bright copper orange color and had a thin white head. Heavy fruit aroma and sweet malt on the nose. Raisins, figs, apples, caramel, along with a toasted nutiness. Taste is strong but not overbearing. Close to being a sipper but not there yet. Still very drinkable and very flavorful. Lingering oiliness on the back of the throat. It’s complex and strong. I like this beer very much.

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Photo of chiefydawg
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep blood orange, amber body with a short thin whitish head. Fine haze obscures view through the tulip. The head does not last though the glass has legs.

Smells like an English Barleywine should IMO. Sweet malty goodness in the first whiff! White cake batter (with the icing I think), caramel, toffee, butterscotch, biscuit with honey. There actually is a woody, maple-like air there too. some overripe fruit of some sort, faint as it is. Fresh smelling to the last drop.

Tastes as sweet and full as it smells. No big alcohol for as big as the ABV indicates. There is still the honey maple sweetness, maybe even vanilla ice cream. Rich, sweet, and complex. Still woody like a bourbon. Cooked, caramelized brown sugar. How the eff this is not cloying is beyond me but it is not.

Whoa, wait! A few swallows and a comforting warmth wells up in the throat and chest. Nice development as it warms. This sort of opens the door for some of the earthy, woody hop character, muted as it may be. These must be what offsets all of this malt sweetness.

I don't normally think of English Barleywines as a drinkable brew, and this certainly is no session. But I find myself reaching for the glass to sniff and sip way too frequently. That is drinkability to me. Overall I don't know what I would want to change in this from what it is. Boozy and sweet, and I dig it.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Held to the light, it's a blood-red copper. Big creamy head, strongly resembling a classic vanilla milk shake, a real one, not McDonalds. Excellent lacing coats the glass. A cornacoppia of fruits in the aroma: apples, cherries, plums, a dark, tantalyzing mix. A big huge malty body rolls across the mouth, thckly coating everything in its path. Sweet but not cloying, I can taste both the honey and the English hops that are taming the sweetness and performing an incredible balancing act. A dollop of alcohol at the end. A very good barleywine, and still at a very tender age. If cellaring tames that alcoholic burst, it could be love.

Acquired in the Philadelphia Gathering Beer Exchange.

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Photo of shbobdb
4.41/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

I guess this goes to show how you can be completely and utterly tricked by a beer!

I reviewed this beer in my head before I read the bottle, or the website. Knowing that I got it in a Fall-ish trade from Muenchenerkindl (thanks man) I assumed it to be what the picture suggested (and what the seasons suggested): a Maerzen.

I shit you not.

I was going to talk about how this brew is a little too thick of a Maerzen and how it has a little too much fruity melanoidin malt as well as the strange presence of some American hops, but very faint and serving to balance out the OUTRAGEOUS SWEETNESS of the brew . . .

But this isn't a maerzen. It is a Barleywine that can pass as a Maerzen.

Think about that one for a second.

This beer is outrageous. Too sweet for a maerzen, to be sure, but it is just on the outside of too sweet and too cloying (and too boozy . . . btw, I placed this beer at about 6-7% in my head. 11.40! No way!) for a Maerzen but perfect for a barleywine.

This beer is honestly just outside of the quaffable range. I challenge anyone with a love of Germanic beer (ey man, it feels more Germanic than British to me, but with an American twist) to *not* finish this beer in 10 minutes. It's a great beer and a great ride.

Damn I wish they distributed here. This beer is a real winner.

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Photo of Arithmeticus
4.4/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured chilled in ale glass at the White House.

A: caramel orange; small carb stream; 1.5-finger head (creamy); great lacing
S: honey prominent; not much else
T: very smooth ale; not really a barleywine, as I know it; very hoppy and sweet; smooth but complex flavors make this inviting; the ABV is hard to detect.
M: smooth and creamy

great beer

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Photo of emillner
4.39/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 11 February 2005. Purchased thinking it was the new release.

The beer is a nice reddish brown but the head dissipated quicker than I like (but strikes me as being representative of English beers). It has a wonderful sweet caramel nose. The taste is malty caramel with touches of honey and sherry. It is more subdued and not as hopped as American versions of BW, such as SNBFBW. The alcohol and sherry begin to dominate as the beer warms. It would be great with or as dessert.

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Photo of BuzzLitebier
4.38/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really, really liked this beer. It had a nice clear copper color when poured but not much head (nice lacing though). I smelled a lot, but it gave me a strong sense of softness- vanilla, toffee, and butter. The taste was great- a definite barleywine with enough hops to make it taste somewhere between English and American styles. Would I have it again? HELL YES! I will also accept all donations from the company. One note: I noticed above the ABV is listed as 11.4%, but my bottle has 10.5%.

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Photo of MrIncognito
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured from a 12oz bottle into a stemless red wine glass. Beautiful amber, honey-colored body with a thin white head on top. Head quickly fades into whispy lacing and sticks all over the side of the glass.

S - Such potent and pleasing aroma. Great hoppy smell up front chased quickly by a sweet dark fruit and honey smell, then the alocohol. Alocohol is a bit boozy but fits in perfectly with the other aromas, not overpowering.

T&M - I sipped this beer for about an hour and enjoyed every single sip. It was good cold, at cellar temp, and at room temp. Great hoppy flavor mixed with raw honey and maybe just a bit of caramel. Alcohol leads to some sweetness and as it warms gets a bit spicy. The hops taste wonderful and leave a mildly bitter after taste that is nicely balanced by the sweetness.

D - I could sip this all night for sure. The abv leads to a lower drinkability but the flavors are outstanding. A great dessert beer and apertif/nightcap.

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Photo of Andnkuhn
4.35/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of mjc410
4.35/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The pour into my La Moneuse glass raises a bubbly one finger light tan head that does its business falling quickly. The lacing is pretty clingy, especially for a beer as hefty as this. Below, the beer has an impressive ruby-gold-copper thing going on, which just looks great. Translucent and glowing when backlit. No sediment, though, despite the bottle's claim.

The nose is sweet like honey, with citrus and strawberries. Very impressive. Not much depth, but what there is is great.

As for the taste, there's a great deal of caramel, and sweet fruitiness like the strawberry from the smell, but also sweet apple. I don't pick up on any citrus, but the hops lend an ending bitterness that is slightly herbal. Very nicely balanced, and it hides the alcohol quite well, especially for how new it is (bottled only a month ago).

The mouth is quite thick, with almost no carbonation. Works well. A fine barleywine, would be great to introduce someone to the style, but compares exceptionally to some of the greats.

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Photo of Bierman9
4.35/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A sample bottled 05MAR02, it poured a copper color, perhaps with a touch of bronze, and a tad cloudy with the yeast poured in. Had a creamy, fine, tight, lasting head, with OK lace... Nose was somewhat malty, some hops showing up, but mostly with toffee-like overtones! Real good body, and quite smooth when passing over the tongue. Good body and tongue...? Sorry... Flavors were pronounced and well-balanced; rich, malty, caramel-like start, and some sweetness, due to the honey? Pretty strong hop presence, and a touch of grapefruit rearing it's head in a good, long-lasting finish. A warming feeling comes about in the back of the throat, not entirely unwelcome!! Tasty offering!! Thanks, Murph!!

overall: 4.3
appearance: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | mouthfeel: 4.5 | drinkability: 4.5


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Photo of largadeer
4.34/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

1998 vintage shared by mfielden. Thanks, Mark.

Murky and turbid sewer water brown, this doesn't look great by any stretch, though it's surprisingly well carbonated for a 12 year old beer.

The aroma, on the other hand, is great. Sherry and brown sugar with undertones of dates, earth, leather. This has oxidized very gracefully.

The palate mirrors the nose, opening with mellow sherry-like oxidation and brown sugar. Dark fruit flavors lend complexity, bringing to mind figs or dates. Surprisingly, it's still mildly hoppy, just enough to balance the malt with a touch of bitterness. The finish is leathery, earthy, semi-dry and very mellow. This is quite good, it reminds me a fair bit of aged JW Lees' Harvest Ale. Highly recommended.

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Photo of Proteus93
4.34/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle served as a single at Beer Run... the bottle design is different than the one I am used to seeing, but it looks like the bottling date is Feb. 11, 2009, so it could just be a new one.

A: Rather pretty orange-amber-reddish hue. The head is a bit short, but not surprising for a higher alcohol brew. It tries to form, with a vigorous bubbling rising from the bottom... it just doesn't become much.

S: Not as hot as other barleywines that I've had in the past. Hoppiness comes out quite nicely, giving it a floral scent, and a big graininess. Alcohol is there, but nicely balanced with the other aromas. Very nice.

T: Sweet, I'm surprised by the flavours of honey that come through. Along with the hops, I find some comparisons to the flavour profile of Bell's Hopslam - not a direct comparison, but a notable similarity in flavour profile. Alcohol spiciness is there for some extra kick, but it's not massive and wickedly hot... quite a bit like the aroma there.

M + D: A nice, big-bodied, big alcohol beer, as it should be... though the ABV listing on this bottle is now 10.5% rather than the 11.4 noted here, so it's a bit of a modification to the recipe. I would be interested in seeing how this held up with a little age, as it could get some interesting flavours. Usually not a big fan of the style, but I enjoyed this quite a bit - hopefully it's something I can continue to get in the future, with the brewery going through the transition. Very nice, and perhaps one of my favourite barleywines!

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Photo of Stubbie1
4.33/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This brew pours a rusty orange color. The head was short lived and a thin ring was around my glass. The aroma was of caramel and sweet candy. Alcohol was also present. The taste was rich with flavors, caramel, candy malt and hops and alcohol are on the list of things to notice while enjoying this brew. A very nice and enjoyable brew from ODB. It is the first brew that I have tried from them and it will not be the last. This barley wine is well worth the search.

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Photo of Ctb6582
4.33/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Todd
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: A big, most impressive, 2L growler -- full with ceramic lock-top and metal handle. This sample is from the Feb. 2000 batch. Typically sold in 12oz bottles, and bottle-conditioned.

Appearance: Bright copper/amber with a thin off-white creamy lace.

Smell: Caramel, fruity esters, toasted and biscuit aromas. You can smell the distinct English Kent Goldings that were used to dry-hop this beer (half a pound to the barrel).

Taste: Smooth, sweet and creamy on the palate. Slick and buttery caramel and toffee flavours coat the mouth in a syrupy textured sweetness. Notes of raw honey follow with a hop oily feel soon after. The beer then peaks with a mixture of raw and coarse flavours, none of which are entirely bitter, but rather perfectly balance the huge malt profile. Fusel alcohols are definitely present and begin numbing the brain instantly. Finishes with an oily palate and a semi-bitter/dry feel.

Notes: At a healthy 10.4%abv, Millennium is a very interesting barleywine. It's brewed with 100% imported English malts and Virginia honey.

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Photo of sulldaddy
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this one from Garthwaite I think. Thanks for the hookup!
I am sampling a chilled bottle in a snifter. Beer pours a clear chestnut color with a very small off white head. Aroma is very sweet with clover honey, caramel, toffee and some piney hops. First sip reveals a small prickly carbonation and a big syrupy texture. THe flavor is toffee, pears and plums and some piney hops. There is a significant alcohol bite, but at 11.4 this is expected. The alcohol is not dominant by any means but is present for sure. This is a big tasty beer not for the faint hearted. Gives a nice warming in my belly, but no burn on the way down. very well crafted!

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer poured hazy deep orange amber. The head was off-white and huge lasting to lace the glass.

The aroma was malty and sweet with substantial hops in the background. The hops are American and citrusy and well aged. Also present is some alcohol.

The flavor was malty and bitter in well balanced complexity. Some alcohol is present in the flavor, but it does not lessen the drinkability.

The finish was dry and slightly bitter but well done. The body was full to medium full.

12 ounce bottle. Jan 27, 2003.

I poured this beer by mistake, I thought I was having a different Dominion beer and had meant to age this one a little further. No need!

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Photo of nriech
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep copper, little sediment. Slight head.

Smell: Caramel, pine, alcohol. A bit sweet but winelike. Very nice.

Taste: Nicely balanced. Sweet at first followed by a little bitter and some alcohol in the finish. Low carbonation. Flavors of caramel, raisin, oak. Finish is slightly different adding some hops and sweet plum.

Overall an awesome barley wine.

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Photo of LuckySevens82
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle (I'm sorry but I can't remember where I got this one from, if you sent it to me, let me know and you shall get credit where credit is due...I'm pretty sure it was PintofAle)
Anyway, pours a hazy copper color with a small head that gives, quickly away to a fair collar and just a little bit of lacing on the top of this brew.
Smell is toffee, caramel, honey, some fruits (peaches, plums). This is also a little bready for a barleywine, which works real well in conjunction with the other aromas. Alcohol is present in the nose, but not overpowering.
Taste has a definite honey character to it. Followed by bitter hops, some roasted characteristic (which is admitedly kind of odd, but hey, I calls em as I sees em), caramel, and fruit. Not quite as bready in the flavor as I would have imagined from the aroma, but still pretty hearty tasting. Alcohol heat is definitely present and warms the gullet as this one slides down.
Mouthfeel is good, nothing out of the ordinary for the style.
Overall, a good barleywine, kind of reminds me of Victory's Old Horizontal, but not quite as good. Still, however, a darn good beer that I would go back to if I had the chance.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Color is a bright ruby red, underneath a solid creamy head. Aroma is thick, pungent, oozing honeyish sweetness, and offering up a multitude of associations: molasses, rum, brandy, fruits, and candy. Taste is huge and fierce with hops, but never too much, it feels juuuust right. Malt comes to the the fore now, and the feeling is toasty and warm. A welcome and lasting finish.
Somewhat mild, I felt, in some mysterious way, than other, bolder barleywines, but very true to form and very enjoyable.
So why didn't it feel like 11.4%? Thanks to Marc77 for sending it along!

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Photo of BigJTrucker
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes. Tasted 7/13/07.

Pours an orange ruby color similar to dark honey. Low head retention. Has a nice citrusy aroma, a faint odor of honey. Very balanced. Nice hoppy flavor with a heavy mal backbone. ABV is very well hidden. Mouthfeel is slightly sticky, nice and smooth. By far one of the most drinkable barleywines i've had. This bottle was only 6 months old. I'd like to see how a year or two would affect the flavors.

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Photo of Shiredave
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottling date: 02/16/06 - if I'd noticed before opening I would have waited another week. Good info on bottle -Uk Malts, Virginia honey, US and german hops for bittering and EK Goldings for aroma - good mix.

Lovely deep amber color with a bright white head. Foam collapses to an ever present film with a few specks of lace. Slight chill haze shows protiens not all filtered out but very little trub in the bottle for a bottle conditioned beer.

Aroma is all malt - huge, sweet burnt caramel and alcohol and then more toffee and light floral notes. Brandy like blasts of higher alcohols waft in and out. Could be cleaner - any goldings hops are lost in the background, but fine to me for a BW.

Big sweet Mead flavors up front are followed quickly by firm grassy/ herbal notes and sharp bite on the tongue and back of mouth. Alcohol is all but smothered in the balanced barleywine character - as I think it should be. Excellent mix of flavors with no one componant dominating, making large swallows very drinkable. No rough edges here - very tasty.

The body is a bit thin , but thats actually a good thing in my book as that makes this a highly drinkable BIG beer w/out the syrupy heaviness some have and the 11+ % doesnt detract from the flavor and only adds the appropriate warmth on the finish.

A very nice "EastCoast" style BW from a highly underrated Brewery IMHO.
Maybe a year is a good aging point - tho I would like to try older examples.

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Photo of CharlesRiver
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is my favorite style of beer so when I received a bottle from Murph I was very excited. Something that we can't get in New England but one that I have wanted to try. Pours are beautiful amber color with little to no head. The smell is sweet, sherry and a hint of hops. When I tasted this brew the first thing that I noticed was how smooth it was. I had to look at the date again just to make sure it was from the 2002 batch. Hints of raisins, figs and something very earthy comes through. I can definately feel the warming feeling coming through. I might be chastised for saying this but I would put it against Bigfoot.

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Dominion Millennium Ale from Old Dominion Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.01 out of 5 with 367 ratings
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