Sisyphus | Real Ale Brewing Company

very good
644 Ratings
no score
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Brewed by:
Real Ale Brewing Company
Texas, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by aracauna on 12-18-2002

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Ratings: 644 |  Reviews: 323
Photo of mhenson42
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of jheezee
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of DeSoto
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of ATXRyan
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of IpeeA
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of brett606
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of masterhomebrewer
5/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2007 bottle received as an extra in trade from JosephLondon. Thank you, kind sir.

A -- Bottle gushed minimally. Pours a beautifully clear, copper-golden color with one-inch head. Really, really pretty.

S -- Wow, what a surprise. Big, huge Brett funk right up front followed by bready malts. Just an outstanding surprise. I glanced at other reviews and see no mention of Brett, so I must assume that this was unintentionally infected with Brett. But it smells goood....

T -- Holy god. Huge Brett funk, dark fruits, salty, delicious, earthy, tobacco-y complexity that finishes with a perfectly-balanced bitter bite. A multitude of flavorful delights that all seem to work in unison to create one of the most interestingly complex tasting experiences I have ever enjoyed. I am just blown away by the way the (unintentional?) Brett has added to the complexity and perfectly tied together all the diverse elements of this beer. The 11.5% alcohol is not even noticeable.

M -- Creamy and smooth. Just delightfully warm and tingly with the perfect amount of carbonation.

D -- Exceptional. It's such a delicious taste experience that I can imagine drinking two of these every night for the remainder of my days. Unfortunately, since this beer is not available in my area, and I seem to be the only one who got the Brett-infected bottle, this appears to be a one-night love affair, sadly.

Edit: I see now that a couple of others have picked up a wild Brett influence. If you have 2007s of this, drink 'em or send them my way!

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Photo of Daveychu
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of joefuzz
5/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Reviewing 2009 and 2010 vintages side by side both sent to me as extras by a very generous Jefferz5000...Thanks Jeff

09-5- Pours a very nice hazy gold with a way larger than expected off white head for the ABV with great retetion.
10-5- Pours same hazy gold as as the 09 with a larger more suddy lumpy off white head great retention and lacing

09-5- Smells of apircots and sweet caramel with a suprising hop presence.
10-5- Fairly large hop presence for the style upfront with rasins and sweet toffe

09-5- Slight hop taste up front that quickly gives way to caramlized sugar and sweet plum tastes
10-4.5- Little larger hop taste than the 09 with lots of sweet candy sugary aftertaste not much fruit presence

09-5- Mouthfeel is perfect creamy and smooth the huge head led me to believe this would be pretty over carbonated but its just right.
10-4.5- Mouthfeel is pretty on point with a fresher barleywine not as creamy as the 09 and a little thinner and more carbonated but still pretty stellar

09-5- Overall very happy with this beer, one of the best barleywines i have had recently.
10-4.5- Overall great beer as well, prefer it with a little more age on it. its nice to see what a beer turns into with a little age.

Thanks again Jeff

 1,242 characters

Photo of derbledraught
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of TheChristmas
5/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

They say this is a nice one to bottle age, but who has the patience for that? This stuff is so good, so mellow & so gone in 60 seconds.

135 characters

Photo of ldookmariot
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of JustCallMeAL
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of starkmarvelo
5/5  rDev +27.9%

Photo of kbub6f
4.9/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2005 vintage, fresh.

The head is small, thick and creamy white. The beer is amber-copper-brownish and a touch hazy. Wow! Huge, sweet, buttery, caramel, syrup, fruity nose. Unbe-freakin-lievable. Sweet butter-caramel syrup in front. Super thick, fruity, caramel middle. Substantially bitter finish with alcohol kick. A very bitter aftertaste. Man, this is freaking awesome: so buttery, caramely. Sweet, but not too sweet for me (I'm pretty sensitive to over-sweet beers). Big hoppy finish. Absolutely fantastic.

 513 characters

Photo of thugherman
4.75/5  rDev +21.5%

Photo of JeffSuttonTX
4.75/5  rDev +21.5%

Photo of phishbone23
4.75/5  rDev +21.5%

Photo of ATX117
4.75/5  rDev +21.5%

Photo of Buttstallion
4.75/5  rDev +21.5%

Photo of LiveOakMarket
4.72/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

First time I have had this beer. It was quite amazing. Beautiful color, feel, taste, smell. Everything about it was gooood. I'm very happy that Real Ale is finally bottling up more of their beers. I have a lot of people that love the Real Ale company and I think it's about time that they all get to taste them on the go. 2008 was the year of Sisyphus that I had. Gold label.

 375 characters

Photo of stumac
4.7/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2007, aged, cracked open April '08

Pours a murky orange with very delayed, great ivory colored 1 inch head. Head quickly melts away into an uneven layer of bubbles. Great lace staying all over my Duvel glass. The weight of this beer is tremendous and obviously screaming "I'm so damn full bodied!"
Aromatics of faint, citrusy hops, sweet malt characters, notes of caramel.
Taste is great! Light tangerine flavor, sweet caramel that sticks to your lips, slight spicy hops, floral hops, slight alcohol spice, mellow carbonation, long long long lingering finish.
A great beer. Masks the high alcohol fantastically. You can tell that aging this beer for a really long time will be in order. Snatch the '07 while you still can!

 734 characters

Photo of Sven_Darinski
4.65/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Tried the 2012 and first try was less than favorable as the alcohol seemed to overwhelm any flavor but for the sour hops. The second and third glass (not the same night) however changed my mind. Seems the hops tame over time and an added caramelized or sweet note balances the hops. But make no mistake the punch in this barley wine is not for a "sisy."

 353 characters

Photo of Buebie
4.63/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A 2007 bottle courtasy of gford217

Poured from a brown longneck into a pub glass. The pour produced a 1'' tan head. The beer itself is a buetiful unfiltered redish copper, very hazy, not at all transparent, glows well when held to light. Retention is stellar with a quarter inch of milky foam and thin streaks of lace.

Aroma is ultra sweet with grains and honey. Caramel and biscuity bread tones. Faint grapefruity hops. This smells absolutly delicious, very rich and malty.

Mouthfeel is super thick and creamy, with a slickness to it. Probably the best mouthfeel to any barleywine I've ever had. Exceptionally thick and creamy! If 6 were an option for the feel on this, then a 6 it would get.

Taste upfront is more sweet and pronounced cereal grains,with honey and carmelised sugars. Just a touch of warm alcahol into the swallow, there really is no heat on this and thats also quite remarkable for an 11% beer.
Finishing with sweet malt and plenty of grains and buttery caramel rolls. Hops still do live and provide some balance to this ultra sweet delight. A bit of bittering grapefruit, not a whole lot, but its noticeable and not sudued. So, yes, this has done well with age, I have nothing to compare it to as far as a fresher bottle, but for a 2 year old bottle it is damn good.

Thanks Grant!

 1,305 characters

Photo of facundoCNB
4.62/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2011 bottle

a murky orange with a finger of head (holy crap, carbonation!) which quickly diminished. nutty, malty, sweet caramel smells coming right up front.. almost an almond like scent. the taste is a complex mix of grains.. barley, i taste some oats, some rye as well.. holy crap this is like drinking a world class bread. not even tasting the abv at all on this one but i know it's high. very sweet, honey like hints, mixed in with bready flavors. best tasting barley wine i've had in a long time.

medium to full in body with a modest amount of carbonation for the style of beer this is.

a great sipper, a wonderful barleywine.. way breadier than most i've tasted.

 673 characters

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Sisyphus from Real Ale Brewing Company
3.91 out of 5 based on 644 ratings.
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