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Old Dickens | Engine House No. 9

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7 Ratings

Brewed by:
Engine House No. 9
Washington, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 16.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 7 |  Reviews: 5
Photo of KiMiRaiK
4.25/5  rDev -2.5%

Photo of beerandcycling88
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of grittybrews
4.3/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Like the others at the 10/2011 South Sound tasting, I enjoyed a glass of the 2004 version. What a day!

Poured a thick orange-amber with a thin slick of eggshell head. Big aroma with sticky toffee, maple syrup, orange, and maybe a touch of pine.

Slightly low carbonation and a syrupy but not overly heavy mouthfeel. Thick, sweet flavors of honey biscuit, toffee, and caramel mingling with citrus, muted hop bitterness, and only a hint of boozy warmth. I was bowled over when I saw this listed at 16% -- never would have guessed.

This barleywine packs a lot of flavor and conceals its size well, although the sweeter aspects certainly dominated the other flavors. A real treat!

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4.15/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have had numerous vintages of this all the way back to 2004 which was the very first batch. At one time I boasted this to be one of the best bwines in my arsenal but the last batch sampled in early 2011 was no comparison to other older vintages. Therefor, I re-reviewed upon the last tasting in 2010.

A: Poured like a dark amber log cabin syrup.

S: Sugary and so sweet. Nose is molasses, brown sugar, maple syrup, citrus, caramel.

T: All of this in the nose alone and the taste was big, thick and chewy with lots of sugar, syrup and hops. I also picked up a random piece of cardboard, faded hops, thinner on the mouth, not quite as big on body and lacking the flavor as I once came to love.

M: Big body, carbonation is high for such a big beer.

O: Todays Old Dickens is good but not the same Old Dickens I came to love and boast about many years ago. However, this beer ages extremely well by evidence of the brewer bringing an outstanding batch of the 2004

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Photo of youradhere
4.62/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

South Sound Tasting Notes- thanks to whomever brought the swingtop of this (what I am told by everyone) 2004 vintage. 15 minutes fresh from the keg.

Poured crystal gold with ruddy highlights; no head and near still, small bubbles can be seen sluggishly making their way up the glass. Smell is caramel apples, apricots, fresh toffee and vanilla- but my words can't describe how great these aromas worked together in this! Taste was fresh gala apples (not a flaw- from the malt character I believe) dipped in creamy caramel, rich toffee with flakes of milk chocolate. As it warms the toffee notes become more present and the full rich character really begins to shine. Mouthfeel is surprisingly medium-bodied for a 16%, alcohol is nearly non-existant; low carbonation and extremely fun sipping! Overall an exceptional beer, I would score it higher but that would require the opportunity for me to have a bottle to myself for a cellar ;)

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Photo of RedDiamond
4.59/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer really floored me. I remember tasting a cask-conditioned sample several years ago and being really impressed. But my return for a full glass exceeded my memory's expectations. Old Dickens combines curious notes of black licorice with clover honey, brown sugar, maple syrup and juicy fruit to achieve a voluminous flow of taste patterns. It is a sluggish ale of brandy color with luscious fruitbowl aromas centering on fig and apricot. A strong backbone of bittering keeps it all upright and focused.

I found Old Dickens irresistible. It is fat and sassy and a pleasure to drink from top to bottom. Another contender for the crown.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.12/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured cold into an 8oz pilsner glass
A - Transparent copper with tinges of brown and a slight haze with a small tan head that leaves a smidge of lace.

S - Nice mix of hoppy and sweet malts with a full on alcohol aroma and woody scent. The aromas of stone fruit and vinous scents are also at work here.

M - Full thick warm & sugary sweet w/ the heat of 16% evident in the way it rides the tongue and coats the mouth. So effortlessly and sinfully smooth for the strength.

T - Full on balanced barleywine - so fruity and smooth with wood and candied fruit cordial flavor. Caramel and light citrus combine with cinnamon and dark sugar. The taste of high octane ale kicks later with a rum-like effect.

D - Do darn strong it knocked me into a different dimension quickly. Even at 8oz it is tough to consider this bruiser highly drinkable. The flavors are blended well and it hides the potency overall so I gave it a little higher drinkability score.

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Old Dickens from Engine House No. 9
Beer rating: 4.36 out of 5 with 7 ratings