Arcadia Bourbon Barrel Aged Cereal Killer Barleywine | Arcadia Brewing Company

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Arcadia Bourbon Barrel Aged Cereal Killer BarleywineArcadia Bourbon Barrel Aged Cereal Killer Barleywine

Brewed by:
Arcadia Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: English Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by jplopez21 on 01-14-2013

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Reviews: 27 | Ratings: 156
Photo of BEERchitect
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Barleywines, especially in the U.S., get a bad wrap for becoming a syrupy, boozy mess of a beer with seeming the kitchen sink thrown at it, and then finishing with an aggressively bitter bite. But with Aradia brewers at the helm, there's no such threat with Cereal Killer. And with the patience to let the barleywine slumber in bourbon barrels, magic begins to happen.

The powerful ale pours with a deep crimson, showing strikingly brilliant clarity through its garnet darkness. While a dainty creme-laced froth swirls on top, the ale soon favors the appearance of cognac and port. Those fortified wine note carry over to the scent with the dense maltiness of maple, toffee and molasses wrapped around dark, dried, pitted stone fruit and a boozy tingle to the nose. Its taste is a direct reflection of the beer's dedicated to barley as those succulent sweet flavors slather onto the tongue.

Early sweetness acts to prop up the condensed fruit flavors that deliver bold clues of date, fig, raisin, plum, prune, red grape, cherry and apple- all weaving into a spicy sweet bit to remind the palate of rum and fruitcake. Yet as the palate dries, the sweetness begins to give way to fine aged sherry wine and madeira before turning leathery, powdery and earthen of fresh-hung tobacco. And alas, its those caramels, vanillans, charred oak and coconut flavors of the barrel that leave final impressions.

Although the ale is full, robust and carries a larger-than-life attitude, it is remarkably dry and spicy to finish. Its light and chalky closure highlights the barrel and its spicy tannins, simmering alcohol heat and supple acidity for a great sense of palatability despite such a complex malt arrangement. Lingering tobacco and stone fruit puts the ale on par with any of those fortified wine digestives or cordials.

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Photo of matt_duthie
4.23/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Stumbled across this on tap tonight at the Beer Grotto in Ann Arbor, and I was pretty excited, despite reasonably "meh" experiences with Arcadia's barrel-aged scotch ale and porter....But it did not disappoint. Darker than expected, perhaps 30% moreso than standard Cereal Killer. One finger of tan head, served in a snifter. Went straight to tasting, and it was smooth, complex, and delightful. Bourbon was there but not overly intense, and the transitions between caramel, vanilla, bourbon, marshmallow/chocolate/toffee dessert, and finally some remnants of the hops, were seamless and utterly enjoyable. 8oz was enough, but I'd be happy to have more.

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Photo of Davepoolesque
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out black with no head. Toffee, caramel, brown sugar and vanilla. Pretty standard BA english Barleywine. Delicious, smooth, lower carb, lighter mouthfeel.

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Photo of deadonhisfeet
4.16/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a Brooklyn Brewery snifter. The pour is very dark, but crystal clear. It is reddish-brown in color with ruby red highlights. It sports about a finger of tan head that quickly dies down to a lace around the rim of the surface. The nose is quite impressive. Lots of sweet bready malt, vanilla, bourbon, a bit of fusel alcohol, and some milk chocolate.

Full bodied with a slick feel and a strong, sweet flavor that follows the nose quite well. Caramel and toffee charge at you unhindered by any hops or roasted malt. Bourbon and oak take over and the sweetness intensifies. The only thing slowing it down is the feel, which seems thin to be supporting all that flavor. On the back of the palate you get candied fruit and a port-like winey quality before a flash of alcohol heat shakes you up. Not the most drinkable beer, but good BBA barleywines never are. A good sipper on a cold January evening.

I have no idea what this beer was like fresh. I only scored one bottle and I sat on it a couple years before drinking it. I was very impressed, though the feel was a bit thin for my liking and after two years it still provided a good blast of alcohol burn on the finish. Bourbon barrel aging is perfect for an English barleywine and this one shows all the wonderful qualities you'd look for. I rate this one slightly above Insanity, yet far, far behind Sucaba and BCBW. If I ever got another bottle, I'd age it a little bit longer before drinking (3 years minimum).

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.03/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Deep amber body. No head. Lifeless.

Smell - Bourbon. Sharp oak. Light fruitiness. Lots of caramel.

Taste - Very oaky. Dark fruits. Bourbon. Even more oak. Caramel without being sweet. Dry and bitter woody finish.

Mouthfeel - Low carbonation. Kinda boozy, but not bad. Medium heavy.

Overall - Really impressive. Kinda simple, but there's no excess sugar and it isn't too boozy.

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Photo of buschbeer
4.09/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

22 FLUID OUNCE bottle
Served in an oversized wine glass
10% abv

A - This beer pours tea colored with some amber highlights. It is capped with two inches of tan head the streaks lacing on the sides of the glass.

S - It is sweet. I get aromas of caramel and vanilla. There is bourbon in there as well.

T - The taste mirrors the smell. It is sweet with caramel and vanilla. The bourbon isn't as noticeable as in the smell. I do taste some oak. The taste improves and increases as it warms. The bourbon starts to become apparent in the aftertaste.

M - Full and smooth. Low carbonation.

O - This barley wine absorbs a lot of bourbon characteristics. It is sweet but not overtly so. It is an enjoyable tasting experience.

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Photo of BMMillsy
4.27/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle from trade. Looks like it says 2012 on the bottle, poured 4/1/14. Pours murky brown with a bit of purple and red, and a small creamy yellowish brown head. Smells like vanilla, caramel, marshmallow, toffee, fig, bourbon. Beautiful. Flavor is gifs and bourbon, a blast of vanilla on the finish, slight oxidization but not bad. Mouthfeel starts rich and thick, but with very low carbonation that seems to make this feel a little thin. Some more carb would help the mouthfeel. Very nice beer that I would like to try fresh.

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Photo of Supergenious
4.71/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Smells of bourbon, vanilla, a fair bit of fruitiness, dates, figs. Overall very pleasing aroma.
Tastes more of the same. This stands out as one my all time favorite barleywine experiences. Very malt forward, with no real hop presence, which is expected of the style. The booze is covered up very nicely. Cereal Killer is my go to barleywine and the bourbon takes it to the next level. Can't for them to brew some more. Highly recommend.

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Photo of RaulMondesi
4.01/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Shared by my boy J47Paco - can't thank you enough, playa!

First and foremost, massive aromas pour out of this sucker like I am sprinkling raisins on my corn flakes in the AM - Raul means, boom. Classic Barley Wine notes all around like Johannes Brahms conducting his Requiem. Now, this isn't as great as said Austrian genius, but it's not Miley Cyrus either. Decent flavors/textures; a bit sweet and a tad thin, but overall, do it to it.

Sip on this and then hit the gym, my children. Y'all getting fat.

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Photo of maximum12
3.42/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to the urbane, witty, dorkaceous lurpy1 for muling this back from Michigan, his second home, for me. 12 oz. bottle, red wax. minimalist gold & black label.

Pour is a deep mahogany red with nary a bubble or carb to be seen. Nose bring some toffee, caramel, booziness, but nothing in spades, just a giggle here or there of each. Huh.

Cereal Killer - Bourbon Barrel Aged brings the high, hard heat. Boozy bourbon & alcohol spark the palate, followed with the heavy hand of caramel & toffee noted in the nose. Sticky & dry, which seems odd. A bit flat; splitting the small bottle with my wife seems like a good decision.

Nothing really notable going on here, a rather routinely pretty good barrel-aged barleywine, if such a beast exists this side of the river Styx.

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Photo of Googs
4.59/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

12oz red wax bottle poured into snifter. No date on the bottle, but I'm assuming it's a 2012 vintage. Wax was tough as fuck to get off.

A: Cola, deep ruby red color. Small off white head that went away real quick and won't come back at all, no matter how hard I try to get it.

S: Very sweet toffee, oak/bourbon, vanilla, caramel. I gotta say, it reminds me of coke, in the best way possible

T: Complex brew here IMO. First is the rush of the sweetness you get in the nose, followed by a heavy and apparent amount of bourbon. The balance is good for me, but if your not a fan of bourbon forward barleywines, I would tread lightly with this one. Just fucking great though.

M: Like others have said, the mouthfeel is on the thinner side, which takes some points off. It's not my favorite BA barleywine for this reason, but it's up there with some of the best. Good amount of carbonation for the style. Coats the palate, and the heat from the bourbon hits you hard on end, leaving a bit of the burn in the throat.

O: I was searching this one out for awhile, and I wasn't disapointed. Yes, the mouthfeel could be fuller, and it is a barrel forward beer, which I don't mind, but I find it complex enough. It's doing all the right things for the style, so I don't really agree with some of the BA reviewers on this one. But to each his own. On that note, seek this one out if you think you can dig it. Looking forward to BA Shipwreck!

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Photo of bluejacket74
4.24/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 ounce wax capped bottle, 12/18/12 stamped on the bottle. Served in a DFH snifter, the beer pours a dark reddish/mahogany brown color with about a quarter inch tan head that didn't stay around for too long. There's also a small amount of lacing. The aroma is rich and malty, the brew smells like bourbon, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, oak, and a bit of booze. Taste is similar to the aroma, but with the addition of some molasses and raisins. There's also a surprising amount of bitterness in this brew, although the sweet malty flavors are stronger. Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, it's slick and easy enough to drink for a 12% ABV brew. Moderate carbonation. I thought this was a good brew, hopefully I can pick up another bottle in the future. $7.99 a bottle.

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Photo of scottfrie
3.63/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle into snifter. Thanks Jay!

A: Pours an extremely dark mahogany with a finger of oily light tan head. Head quickly faded into a faint collar leaving no lace.
S: Bourbon soaked raisins, heavy on the caramel, sweet candied sugar, brown sugar, and mild vanilla and sweet chocolate. I get a few hints of something musty as well.
T: Musty scent is definitely woody bourbon barrel and aged leafy hops. I get flavors of spicy bourbon, oak, musty damp basement, earth, caramel, raisin, tobacco, chocolate and faint vanilla and brown sugar. Sweet candied sugar in the finish with tobacco and leather and cocoa in the aftertaste.
M: Small amount of alcohol heat, warming, heavy, slick mouthfeel, and a tad greasy in a good way. Drinks very well for 12%.
O: Not as baller rich and complex as some, but definitely better than most. Thanks again, jbck109.

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Photo of KYGunner
4.18/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This poured with virtually no head but seemed to come alive with a rush of bubbling. Once the bubbles quit rising from the bottom it collared a nice frothy foam. Very dark rubyness , the color was easily pierced by the light.

Not a ton of diversity in the nose it is strong and attractive. Large doses of coconut with a creamy bourbonesque aroma the scent is pleasing. Hidden oak and earthy tones sit at the end but the coconut yields to a vanilla espresso.

I taste chocolatey fudge with hints of vanilla, coconut and whisky sour. Hints of raisin, caramel, and buttery sweetness also caress the tongue. The feel is light, not boozy, creamy and silky which makes this a damn good barley wine.

I have read several other reviews that comment on strong alcohol qualities. Mine sat in my "cellar" aka dark closet for 4 months. This must have taken the edge off as I could not be more impressed with with the smoothness and ease.

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Photo of inlimbo77
3.79/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz, winter '13
Riedel tulip

A: Pours a deep reddish brown color. Deeper than expected. Initially about a half finger of light tan/off white head. Some sticky lacing. Definitely some alcohol feet.

S: Vanilla bean. Some sweetness. Booze. Some toffee/caramel but wish there was more of it. Some leather in there too.

T: Don't know what to say hear. It's sort of one note: booze. Wish the flavors were better integrated. You get the sweet malts but it isn't playing as well with barrel as I would have assumed. Wish booze was dialed down. Some of that old ale or leather is there. Warming in the throat is there for sure. You feel that 12%

M: Big medium to full.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.86/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Picked this up last week at The Beer Shoppe in Ardmore, PA. $8 for a 12 oz. bottle, poured into my Cigar City snifter.

a - Pours a deep reddish-mahogany brown color with two inches of light tan head that quickly leaves and moderate to high carbonation evident.

s - Smells of caramel malts, toffee, sweet bourbon, oak, vanilla, toasted malts, molasses, and sweet dark fruits. Nose is really nice; lots of caramel and toffee mixing with some nice sweet bourbon. Bourbon is not overpowering but present.

t - Tastes of alcohol, caramel malts, sweet dark fruits, bourbon, coconut, oak, toffee, and toasted malts. Way more alcohol here up front, and more dark fruits. A pretty big step down for me from the great nose.

m - Medium to full body and moderate to high carbonation. Alcohol heat present and a bit overcarbonated.

o - Overall I had high hopes for this one, especially after smelling it, but the taste just has too much alcohol up front at the moment. It gets considerably better as it warms up, but it is very strong. It's a little overcarbonated but the nose is great. I'd rank this slightly behind the BA stout, and way behind the BA porter, though I could see this being much better with more time on it. Will hold onto my other bottle for a while, at least a year.

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Photo of riemster
3.23/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a Hoppin Frog snifter.

A- darker than your average barleywine with a red tinge, very small head that fades quickly

S- brown sugar, caramel, oak, little bourbon

T- very sweet, almost too sweet, dry aftertaste, bourbon taste is off putting, little oak, fake chemical-like vanilla and caramel

M- maybe a little too thin as well, but decent, medium carbonation

O- Something is off, but it has the potential. It just falls flat. Did not get much bourbon presence as I had hoped, but was happy with that because I found what taste to be strange. It was just too dry for my liking and had a strange after taste. Maybe I had a bad bottle, but I was not impressed. Maybe I'll try it again because it is reasonably priced.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.65/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Bottle acquired in a trade with the very gracious Duff27. 12% ABV confirmed. 70 IBUs. Simple black label. 12 fl oz brown glass bottle with waxed over pressure cap served into a Mitchell's of Lancaster flared stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are high.

Served straight from the fridge and allowed to warm considerably over the course of consumption; I don't like my barleywines too cold. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a half finger light khaki colour head of nice cream, okay thickness, and above average (~3 minute) retention. Body colour is a dark ruby-brown; nontransparent and opaque. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Supple lacing as the head recedes.

Sm: Oak. Light vanilla. Bourbon-forward without any boozy character or alcohol heat. Toffee. Caramel. Light floral hop character. Mocha. Wood barrel. No yeast character is detectable. Biscuit malt. Refined and appealing, if surprisingly light for a bourbon barrel aged beer. Graham cracker. I'm intrigued. Excited to try it.

T: Refined malt body with some fruity sweetness near the climax. Lovely toffee notes and graham cracker. A bit of mocha cream. Well incorporated vanilla about the finish - but the sweetness it provides is a bit too much. Oak is quite buried, but helps render the flavour profile a cohesive whole. Understated and rich. A bit muted, but definitely complex and subtle. It lacks depth of flavour, which is a shame because there's some good stuff here. No yeast character comes through. I do get some alcohol warmth, but it's not a hot or boozy beer - especially for 12%.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Milky. A bit of cream. Warm. Chewy. Nicely thick, maybe a bit too much so. Filling and large. Decent presence on the palate.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable but lacking depth of flavour. There's a lot of good stuff going on here, but it comes off timid and removed. I'll enjoy finishing it, and I'd get it again at the right price and in the right mood - but I can think of better fuller barleywines I'd much rather have. It's a sipper, with present alcohol restricting drinkability. A solid effort from Arcadia Brewing, and I look forward to trying more of their beers. Thanks again, Duff27!


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Photo of zachary80
3.82/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Label says 70ibus, not much else. Purchased this a couple months ago. 12oz waxed screw-top bottle, $7.99

Pours dark amber with small head that dissipates almost immediately. Leaves some bubbles around the edge but nothing significant. Not much light gets through this one. Low lacing.

Smells very boozy. Malty and sweet, some vanilla. Hops and a specific bourbon character are low, but there is some definite barrel presence. Becomes more appealing as I drink it, and overall pleasant despite the alcohol presence.

Flavor is much more mild than anticipated. Booziness is also more muted, although the mouthfeel remains a little hot, as would be expected. Sweet and bitter at the same time, though more of the former.

A little thin for such a large beer. Low carbonation. Warming.

Good but not exceptional. For the most part the alcohol feels like that of a much stronger beer, 15-18% would have been my expectation. I'd have to try another regular Cereal Killer to get an accurate idea of what the barrel is really adding here, but it isn't anything super obvious. A little more body a less alcohol would make a big improvement in my perception of this beer.

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Photo of Rollzroyce21
3.32/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Bottled on 10-Dec-12
Poured into a stemless red wine glass on 1-Mar-13

The wax is pretty thick.

A - This is the first time a beer pour reminded me of pouring Coke; exactly like Coke. But when back lit, the ruby does shine.

S - Typical bourbon notes up front with some creamy vanilla notes. Little booze.

T - First, I'm hit with heavy malts that isn't as creamy as I expected due to the aromas. It's an intense load of malts (I guess the name fits). Then there's a sudden rush of barrel earthy and hoppy bitterness with a saltiness that dries up my tongue. It's labeled as 70 IBU's, but feels higher than that. It makes things so unbalanced that I almost welcome the heat kicking in at the tail end to get rid of the bitter. But along with the heat comes the bourbon notes. This is a roller coaster ride: I'm not sure how I feel about the initial taste, then I get whiplash from the bitter invasion, followed by a decent bourbon presence that doesn't stay as long as I would've preferred. I'm still smacking my tongue to get it wet.

M - I like my BW's smoother and more balanced.

O - I don't get this one.. but I'm not confused as to why others enjoyed this. I would like to revisit at some point, but not holding my breath for it. Still, I'm glad I tried it.

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Photo of cosmicevan
4.33/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

big thanks to genuinedisciple for the kind hookup! can't wait to try this one. enjoyed from my bolt cutter glass.

a - ripped through a thick layer of wax on the bottle and then poured away. brew poured a caramel mahogany. really nice ruby highlights on the sides of the glass. thin bubbly head that was gone quick.

s - really nice meld of bourbon and caramel toffee malts.

t - yum. big decadent chocolatey bourbon smothered over a classic caramel toffee barleywine.

m - wonderful tingle of booziness on the finish, but drinks really easily for such a big brew. everything is in the right place. full bodied, but not chewy.

o - home run. slam dunk. really wonderful BA barleywine. if anything, maybe a bit on the heavy side, but it comes in a 12oz serving :)

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Photo of AleWatcher
3.36/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Looks reallly dark until backlit (or 2/3 finished) and then some reddish hues really shine bright.
Clear shimmering body with a small head that left us too soon and left the merwst traces of spotty lace behind.
Smells of caramel, toffee, earthy oak, a hint of char, and booziness.

Taste follows suit--- sweet malty character, dry boozy finish. Little sticky and oily body leaves a very dry aftertaste.

Feels a hair thin.... but carbonation level is good.

Overall-- nowhere NEAR the porter.
This is ok. It isnt great, but it wasnt a drainpour. Worth trying but not trading for.

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Photo of CruisaC
3.87/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up for $8 at a local bottle shop, excited to see it. 12oz bottle poured into my New Belgium globe.

Pours like cola and settling into something darker. A fleeting head forms and settles into a thin ring.

Smell is full of oak, bourbon, caramel, and vanilla. Ok, I can tell where this beer has resided.

Taste is very similar, which is a little disappointing. Pleasant overall, but hoping for a little more complexity. Maybe the base beer is a little lacking?

Mouthfeel is smooth, but I'd enjoy a little more chewiness for 12%.

Overall a good beer, not great, and I'm not sure worth $8 for a 12oz.

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Photo of StoutHunter
4.22/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

I picked up a bottle of Arcadia's Bourbon Barrel Aged Cereal Killer last month for $7.49 at The Lager Mill. I thought Cereal Killer was a good Barleywine so I decided to give the bourbon barrel aged version a shot, their Bourbon Barrel Aged Shipwreck Porter was very good so I have high expectations for this one, so lets see how it goes. 2013 Vintage. Poured from a brown 12oz waxed bottle into a snifter.

A- The label is pretty simple and straightforward just like the Shipwreck Porter and it's also dipped in some really thick red wax that's tough to remove and it made this bottle a little hard to open. It poured a nice caramel brown like color that took on a nice darker ruby hue when held to the light with a fingers worth of slightly darker tan head that quickly died down to a thin ring that eventually faded and didn't leave any lacing with some noticeable alcohol legs. This is a good looking beer that looks pretty true to style, I have no complaints.

S- The aroma starts off with with a high amount of sweetness that imparted a brown sugar and slight molasses like aroma followed by loads of malts that imparted some caramel, sweet malts, and a slight toffee like aroma. After that comes the barrel which imparts some nice vanilla, bourbon, and wood aromas, the barrel sticks out a fair bit but it goes nicely with the sweet malty aromas from the Barleywine base. This beer a had a very good aroma, the barrel shows up nicely and it still let a good deal of nice Barleywine aromas come though, I really like the aroma.

T- The taste seems to be very similar to the aroma and it starts off with a higher amount of sweetness followed by a large amount of malts that impart some caramel, toffee, brown sugar, sweet malts, and some dark fruit aromas with raisins seeming to stick out the most. Up next comes the barrel which shows up nicely and imparts some woody, bourbon, and nice vanilla flavors that work really nice with the sweet malt base. On the finish there really isn't any bitterness, just some sweetness followed by a medium amount of alcohol that was pretty warming. This was a pretty good tasting barrel aged Barleywine, it had all the flavors that I look for in the style and it had decent balance to it.

M- Fairly smooth, slightly sticky, medium bodied, with a lower amount of medium carbonation that worked well with this beer. The mouthfeel was nice but I felt it was a little on thin side and it would be perfect if it was chewy and thicker.

Overall I thought this was a good beer and a good example of the style, it had almost all the aspects that I expect from the style with lots of malt, bourbon Barrel and warming alcohol and it's a great beer for a cold winter night like tonight. This beer had ok drinkability, it was fairly smooth and the flavors held my attention, but the high amount of sweetness and warming alcohol would prevent me from having another, one 12oz bottle is the perfect amount and it's a great format for this beer. What I liked the most about this beer was the aroma and the balance in the taste, they were both pretty good and worked well with this beer. What I liked the least about this beer was the mouthfeel, it wasn't bad, but the body was just too thin for the style and it needs to be thicker and chewier. I would buy this beer again, if they choose to release it again, it's already gone in my area for the year, but I made sure to grab two extra bottles to throw in the cellar and I will be interested to see how it ages and I'll try and update this review, but the price is on the steep side, if it was anymore than $7.49 I don't think I would buy it, but I would recommend this to anyone who likes bourbon barrel aged beers. All in all I was happy with this beer, it didn't blow my mind and I think I like the Barrel aged Shipwreck Porter a little more, but this was still a good beer that I enjoyed drinking and it was a nice sipper and it's a good cold night treat. Good job Arcadia, thanks for bottling this beer, it's nice to have a tasty barrel aged Barleywine while I wait for the next release of Shipwreck Porter, I think 22 months is the perfect amount of time for this beer to sit in the barrel and it's worth the wait, keep up the good work guys.. 2014 EDIT, just tried one from my cellar that's year old, it got very smooth, almost as smooth as the three year old special edition, the bourbon barrel is toned down a little but it still comes through with some great toffee, caramel, and dark fruit flavors, It aged well and I like that it's smoother, but I think I prefer the fresh bottle since the barrel aspect was more apparent. still got one left that I might wait a year to try.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.08/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to AndresR for sharing this one at jmgrub's tasting.

Pours a hazy dark brown with a foamy tan head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, brown sugar, caramel, bourbon, and wood. Taste is much the same with an alcohol kick on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty but has a better smell in my opinion.

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Arcadia Bourbon Barrel Aged Cereal Killer Barleywine from Arcadia Brewing Company
3.97 out of 5 based on 156 ratings.
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