Magnolia Old Thunderpussy Barleywine | Magnolia Pub & Brewery

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Very Good
24 Ratings

Brewed by:
Magnolia Pub & Brewery
California, United States

Style: British Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Gusler on 12-10-2003

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 24 |  Reviews: 11
Photo of rodbeermunch
3.66/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Brown color with almost no head to speak of, somewhere in the 1/12" range. Aroma is a positive kind of oxidation melded with toffee, chocolate and brown malts.

Taste brings in some caramel with the toffee. Bitterness and roast are there, the hops provide an almost sweetness at this advanced age. The bitterness is still ample in the mouthfeel, mild oxidized wood notes. Plenty of heat, but plenty of malt to absorb most of it from getting too huge.

Its a good beer.

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Photo of Jtrigonis
3.82/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Spaceman_Jer
3.62/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of define333
3.99/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of GClarkage
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of mhaugo
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of jaydoc
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Tuckersmth
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of drummermattie02
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of JonBarley
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.14/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap today. 2010 Barrel aged Evan Williams bourbon version. ABV is up to 11.1 %. 95 IBU

A: Pours black with a thin tan head which fades leaving no lace.

N: Lots of bourbon with vanilla, brown sugar, molasses, some roast and faint char with woody barrel presence.

T: Sweet and smooth bourbon with good structure from the malt. Toffee and caramel. Some fruitiness and wood is evident.

M: Full body and light carbonation. Creamy, deep and rich. Sort of like a bourbon milk shake. Chewy.

O: Oh so crazy good. Thanks.

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Photo of hayesjw
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got to have this a few times, but only on Haight Street (Toronado & @ Magnolia). Kind of a homebrewesque appearance to it, not the most attractive brown color, almost no head or bubbles to speak of. Rich notes of toffee, alcohol, cocao powder.

Taste, a little caramel sneaks in there, more of the toffee, you notice the sweetness the aged hops imparts. The bitterness really seems roasty, I wasn't getting that at first, but this one kind of morphs into the netherworld of porter and barleywine together.

This is a big boy barleywine, coming in around 100 ibu. Worth checking out if you have ample precautions in place.

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Photo of BigMcLargeHuge
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewpub. Pours murky dark amber with tan head. The aroma is mild with smooth dark fruity esters mixing with a subtle sweet maltiness that's a bit musty. The taste is smooth dark fruitiness, some black strap molasses, old musty sweet malts and a dash of caramel here and there. It tends to get a tad bright now and then. More cellar time and this will be fantastic.

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Photo of 4000qtrap
3.84/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Source/Serving: Draft

Smell: Nice ripe pitted fruit notes, some prominent syrupy caramelized malts balanced nicely with citrusy hops. Some coffee and cidery notes too, especially as it warms. Slighty nutty too. Nice.

Taste: Seemlessly balanced sweet and bitter notes...rather than being two distinct entities. A hint of oakiness. Slightly spiced caramale malts with a hint of an apple cider edge. Some pear as it warms. Apple skin bitterness and noticeable warming alcohol combine to break through the sweetness towards the finish - which is semisweet, ripe pitted fruit, a pinch of spice, and apple skin. I canusualy handle high alcohol brews but one of these really did me in, wow. No hint of the 95 IBUs... Not like a Bigfoot that's superhoppy without aging.

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Photo of femALEist
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Magnolia during SF Beer Week:
Old Thunderpussy Barleywine- 10.8%. Points for the name. It poured a hazy teak with no head. It did not have much of a nose- just a touch of candied fruits and malt. It tasted of caramel, toffee, malt with a touch of bitter grapefruit hops and a tad sweet. It was very dry on the tongue from the hop presence. Overall, a pretty well balanced barley wine.

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Photo of nickd717
3.69/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Toronado Barleywine Fest 2010. Not sure where the name of this one came from, but that sounds like a story I'd want to hear.

Pours dark brown with an off-white head and excellent lacing. Really looks great.

Aroma is fairly simple but nice, with caramel and more roast than pretty much any other barleywine I had there that day.

Flavor is very roasty for the style and almost reminiscent of a stout in a way. Biscuit, caramel, and toffee as well. This one is all about the malts.

Medium body with average carbonation and just slight booziness.

Pretty good drinkability. Very good overall, above average even among the great selection I had there.

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Photo of kdoc8
3.92/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at Magnolia brew pub in San Francisco in Feb 2007, released for barelywine and Strong Beer Month. It poured with a thick head and reddish-amber color, lots of lacing. The aroma was mainly of hops and something of a fruit flavor which is not quite apples, but more like peaches or apricots or something. The taste is mainly of hops and alcohol, with a nice flowery aftertaste.

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Photo of tjd25
3.53/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled the 2002, 2003 and 2005 versions at the brewpub. The one I liked best was the 2002 version, but I didn't get to review it.

Intense dark color, thin collar of foam. The smell shows oak, pungent malts and prunes. The taste is caramelized and sweet, deeply hoppy and slightly grassy. Some wooden notes too. Full bodied but not heavy. Fits in the style, but not exceptional, and definitely undeveloped.


Lighter in color than the 2005 version. Sweeter in the smell. Sweet and caramelized, but also roasted notes, almost smoked. More of of a wooden character with sweet notes. Notes of lemon, sweet and refreshing.

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Photo of beerguy101
3.22/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Dark amber color. Small head. Aroma is malty, sweet and fruity. A medium bodied barleywine. Malts are nutty and sweet. Hops are spicy. Nicely balanced. Very smooth taste. Touches of orange and vanilla. Nice beer, but the salty finish kind of ruins everything else. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and dry. Aftertaste is slightly bitter and salty.

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Photo of Gusler
3.62/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled @ Strong Ale Fest San Diego

As it set in my sample glass, an unblurred brown or deep mahogany if you’re so inclined with a smallish light tan head, that was spumous in texture, the lace quite thin. Nose was sweet malt with hints of fusel alcohol, caramel, pleasant as noses go with the start quite sweet and malt laden and the top moderate in feel. Finish had a lenient carbonation, the hops purposeful in their spiciness, quite dry and somewhat salty aftertaste, drinkable but not a great barleywine as one would expect from the “Name”!

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Magnolia Old Thunderpussy Barleywine from Magnolia Pub & Brewery
Beer rating: 3.87 out of 5 with 24 ratings