Oak Aged Barleywine
The Schlafly Tap Room

Oak Aged BarleywineOak Aged Barleywine
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British Barleywine
Ranked #94
Ranked #6,873
3.99 | pDev: 12.53%
The Schlafly Tap Room
Missouri, United States
Very Good
Oak Aged BarleywineOak Aged Barleywine
Notes: Our Oak Aged Barleywine has a deep copper color and an intense malt flavor balanced by assertive hops. Fermentation with American ale yeast allows the caramel malt to shine. We age the beer on new, medium toast Missouri Oak to enhance its complexity and to develop its smooth, luscious character.

Barleywine is a classic English-style hearty ale. The term refers to a beer with the potency of wine and is often vintage-dated.

This beer will continue to age well in a cool dark place for several years, but it is ready to enjoy now.

40 IBU
Reviews: 280 | Ratings: 597 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
4.02/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle. 2013 vintage.
Between a medium to deep amber colored body. Cream colored head which quickly fizzes away to a partial cap. Leaves some scattered spots of lacing.
Aroma of malt, with pear and green apple. There is some oak barrel too. Where are the hops?
Taste is rich with malts, caramel with some fruit aspects (green apple and pear). Quite a note of caramel/light vanilla/oak.
Thicker mouth feel, and very smooth texture. Good carbonation.
Several years in the bottle has mellowed the hops. Expresses as a malty, oak aged pear.

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Photo of TheDoctor
3.85/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Serving: Bottle
Bottled: Nov-19-2013 (Consumed Jan-19-2019)

Pours a crystal clear ruby with a finger of short-lived cream head. Meh retention; some lacing. (3.75)

Caramel, toffee, some oxidation, nutty. (3.75)

Caramel and chocolate, brown bread, light cherry sweetness as it warms. (4)

Fairly full body with carbonation soft carbonation and a smooth finish with a touch of warmth from the alcohol. (3.75)

A nice barleywine that has held up fairly well with the years.
It pours a clear red-almost-black with a whisp of head. The aroma is more oxidized than the flavor but is not intense. Both are sweetly malty with caramel/toffee notes and a nice, treacle finish. It is drinkable and sticky with well-hidden alcohol. The wood character is pretty much non-existent but that is to be expected after 7 years. A decent beer that I'd be curious to try fresh. (3.75)

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Photo of jlindros
4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2007 vintage, saving for a good time, for you Victor and Will
Thicker fizzy head, good retention and lacing, slight hazy reddish color

Nose smells like a very old vintage beer, tons of sweet malt, candy reddish malt, soft aged broken down beer, touch of oxidation perhaps, some toasted oak, some dark fruit, raisiny

Taste big malts, peppery notes somehow, big sweet malt, candy reddish malt, again the soft aged old malt, touch of oxidation but held up very well, plenty of toasted dark char oak, more dark fruits, raisin plum notes, candy sweet almost no booze, drier finish too, very smooth

Mouth is med to fuller bod, decent carb for the age, no real alcohol presence

Overall this aged very well, delicious

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Photo of macrosmatic
3.97/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Thanks to jegross2 for sending this one! Reviewed from (long-standing) notes. Poured from the 2008 vintage, 750 mL bottle into an El Catador Barrel-Aged glass. Drank 7/29/17.

A: Hazy to turbid caramelly brown, with a very thin light tan head that fades quickly. A low level of visible carbonation.

S: Caramel, vanilla, and brown sugar. Sherry-like sweetness here as well, but I wonder if that’s some oxidation. Molasses and sweet, lightly toasted biscuit malts. I'm not getting any wood particularly on the smell.

T: Caramel, vanilla, and molasses. A good bit of dry oak tannins, and still some sherry sweetness. Brown sugar and mild toasted sweet biscuit malts. The finish is lingering sweet malts with woody dryness.

M: An average heft to the body with a sticky mouthfeel for style. Low carbonation sensation, though as expected with age. Alcohol present but not obnoxious for style.

O: This was fairly tasty, has held up to the significant age quite well.

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Photo of ONUMello
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

2013 vintage poured into a snifter
A: Reddish-brown with a thin head
S: Cherry, caramel, malt, yeast, a bit of oak
T: Matches the nose note for note
M: Full-bodied, a touch sweet
O: A decent barleywine that has aged well; the oak shows its presence nicely at this age but the beer is also a bit sweeter/maltier than I'd prefer

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Photo of DragonsMilk
3.48/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a pleasant well crafted brew but to me it falls short of its advertising, style, and price point.

(FYI I've had this beer numerous times but all from the same vintage, maybe other batches are different)

1. I do not detect any barrel influence.

2. I don't get any of the dark fruits typically associated with barelywines.

3. I do get all the characteristics associated with an Old Ale ie, heavy malt, honey, and toffee which Founder's does better with their Curmudgeon brand and for half the price. I paid in the area of 10.99 in 2014 for a 750ml bottle of Schlafly and no more than 12.99 for a 4pack of Curmudgeon 12oz bottles.

Huge malt bomb but nothing else significant going on here. If your in the mood for something really over the top in the same vein as this beer get a bottle of Avery Old Perseverance Old Ale.

This beer's huge malt backbone and relatively neutral everything else make it perfect for experimenting, I've used it to beef up Imperial Stouts that are heavy on flavor but thin in body. 50/50 with Stone Arrogant bastard is wonderful!

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Photo of darktronica
4.19/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2013 vintage, cellar-aged. This is much better than I remember from a previous 2013 bottle enjoyed over a year ago. When served cold, I get some really nice, soft floral notes from the hops, along with orange-blossom honey and caramel. The flavors are subdued, subtle but well balanced. I prefer it that way; as it warms, I start to detect more oak from the barrel and some paper pulp from oxidation. Some more spice also comes to fore from the barrel-ageing, which is fine but doesn't make up for the other changes to the now-warmed flavor profile.

This is probably near its peak, based on my experiences and a quick scan of variations in ratings from other reviews noting the vintage.

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Photo of JamieDuncan
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a 2011 version that had obviously been aged for some time. Zero carbonation, reddish appearance, sweet, rather clean and very smooth, did not notice the alcohol at all. Grew on me as I continued to drink and as it warmed. Interesting try, will certainly try to age a few more barley wines and see what happens.

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Photo of bubseymour
3.59/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 2011 shelf beer found locally and finally getting to sample. For a English Barleywine it was a sort of sweet & sour thing going on, some hops i n the finish. Flat reddish body, malty smell, and a little thin for a 10% beer. It grew on me as it warmed but I think perhaps either its not a great barleywine or 5 years is a little too long to let it sit. Not sure. Probably wouldn't revisit with others out there I want to try or repeat.

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Photo of ryan1788a5
3.65/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

750ml bottle poured into a snifter. 2008 vintage pulled from the depths of the cellar.

A: Orange/brown color with excellent clarity. No head formation at all despite a vigorous pour. Tiny dots of lacing.

S: Thin caramel, toffee, graham cracker, toasty malts. Whiff of red fruit. Faded earthy hops. Some sherry and cardboard oxidation. Oak comes on a bit strong, meeting the base beer head-on and eventually becoming one of the main focal points.

T: Caramel, scones, toast, toffee. Undercurrents of red fruit. Faded hops bring a hollow bitterness and some faint earthy flavors. Strong sherry and honeyed malt notes from the apparent oxidation. Oak is thankfully more subdued than it was in the nose, and imparts a dusty woodiness that peaks on the back end. Drying oaky finish.

M: Thick body. Slick and chewy, though it feels like time has started to thin it out a little. There is still some light, tingling carbonation left.

O: I was given this bottle years ago, and admittedly have no point of comparison to a fresh bottle. However, experience tells me that this probably peaked a good few years ago. Hops have faded into almost nothing, malt flavors are beginning to degrade into that old thin honeyed flavor. Oxidation has kicked in. All of this has allowed the oak to ride up probably more than it did fresh. Still, it held up reasonably well given the time it has under its belt. I've had similar beers that fared a lot worse. There was still enjoyment to be had from it.

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Photo of Harrison8
4.07/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a rich, burgundy, and topped with a medium sized off-white head. No lacing. A sweet, malty aroma. Taste is a smooth, sweet display of malts, with a slight tinge of oak. Mouth feel is smooth, and robust. It feels great. Overall, this is a good barleywine. I wouldn't go out of my way for it, but certainly worth trying.

Served in a 12oz snifter.

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Photo of sphmiel
3.75/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The 2008 vintage, rescued from the beer cave. Pours opaque mahogany with a fading head, sweet malty nose. Sweet malts, minimal hop presence, sticky, but the expected alcohol burn is gone. Like a thin port wine, just as enjoyable.

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Photo of mlockman
3.14/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Not much oak flavor to speak of, and while there is little to no hop-flavor, there is neither an accentuated malt profile as to be expected of this style.

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Photo of tviz33
3.73/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This was the 2008 vintage. Not going in to detail because I had it a few days ago. Underwhelming, but still an enjoyable brew, and my first from Schlafly.

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Photo of dar482
4.34/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A 2010 Vintage.

The beer offers sweet bourbon, toffee and carmael sweetness on the aroma.

The flavor hits with a pop of bourbon up front, then onto rich toffee sweetness, some spice from the bourbon that hits on the back end and the beer dries out. The beer offers a medium mouthfeel.

A decently complex beer that drinks above its rating.

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

A 2012 bottle poured from a 750 into a FW snifter.

L- Nice and dark, kinda burnt looking...very murky.

S- Sweet sugar plums, toffee, caramel, dark fruits and a little oak....maybe some bread.

T- Oaky caramel, toffee, dark fruits...wow, I really like it! Age has mellowed it substantially and allowed the flavors to meld somewhat, but they are still distinguishable if you really think about it and focus. Just the right amount of sweetness up front with a slightly bitter finish.

F- Just right, enough carbonation to feel but not enough to tickle.

O- Very good Barleywine, would definitely grab if I saw again.

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

Large 2011 bottle.
Pours clear dark copper with a decent head.

A faint tart note along with low sweetness distinguished this from other barleywines in a tasting session.

O: Excellent but not superb in all respects.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.75/5  rDev -6%

Bottle: Poured a brown color ale with a medium size off-white foamy head with OK retention and minimal lacing. Aroma consists of caramelized malt with some toffee notes and some residual sugar. Taste is also dominated by caramelized malt with some light toffee notes with quite a bit of residual sugar with light oak notes. Body is a bit light for style with medium carbonation and light warming alcohol. Not bad overall but too much residual sugar for my own taste.

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Photo of KYGunner
4/5  rDev +0.3%

The flavor in this is quite delicious with caramel, coffee, malt, maple, molasses with a turn to chocolate. The chocolate is more profound near the end with hints of bitterness. It's issue is in the feel with an inappropriate thinness but that plays into its deceptive ease. At over 10% it is very easy to drink.

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Photo of barczar
3.85/5  rDev -3.5%

Deeply caramelized malt, dark fruit, and muted citrus form the aroma. Fairly sweet, but toasted oak and light grapefruit provide contrast in the flavor. It's a bit underwhelming in flavor. Wish it matched the aroma more closely.

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Photo of JMS1512
3.78/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Schlafly Reserve Oak-aged Barleywine 2010 Vintage (cool!)

Poured hard into a Duvel snifter

Sight: Dark opaque brown with red hints when examined in sunlight. Tan red that when poured hard, develops into a nice inch-high cushion, but recedes to a thin film. Protein particles settle to the bottom. Should I have poured it with a softer hand? Lacing is one of icicles from the gutters and eaves of a house in Connecticut.

Smell: Much malt, bread and biscuit. I also smell a little booze, and dark fruit or raisin. Did they forget to put in hops?

Taste: More of the same I perceived from the smell. Malt, bread, biscuit… a touch of caramel? A touch of caramel. Some people mentioned butterscotch off a 2012 vintage, but I didn’t get it from its 2 year elder. Hops are only slightly evident, and show up late to the party. We’ll call this a dark-fruit malt bomb. Almost like a Belgian Quad… and I like it.

Mouthfeel: As a somm might say, “medium plus.” It’s coating and a bit of really tiny bubble, not Ian Anderson thick-as-a-brick.

Overall: I feel fortunate to have an aged beer, but not highly sought after, like others out there. I think I may have had my fill of English-style barleywine, but I still haven’t had Mother of All Storms… my white whale.

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Photo of Axnjxn
3.7/5  rDev -7.3%

big barleywine. boozy, lots of oak. caramel and toffee, not too exciting though. decent barleywine but nothing special. mild body. mild carbonation. wouldnt be too thrilled if i was offered this again.

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Photo of Stevedore
3.7/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml of the 2012 bottling opened up by Doug. Poured into a GLBC snifter today, 5/1/2014.

A- Typical barleywine. Caramel brown body, half finger white head with little retention, no lacing. Very placid.

S- smells like tapioca balls. Very toffee and butterscotch forward (in a good, non-contaminated way). Pretty mellow, no indication of big citrus hops as you'd expect from an American-made barleywine.

F- Kind of boring. Sweet, caramel and toffee forward barleywine without much balancing character to it. It's not bad, but it's fairly boring.

M- Medium to thin bodied, lower carbonation, quite on the sweet, slick and sticky end of the spectrum.

O- Not my favorite style and this is one of the lesser ones in the style. Give me Great or The K13 anytime... well that's not fair to Schlafly so I'll just say that I will skip over this if I ever see this again.

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Photo of Boto
4.28/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle: 2010 vintage. This one pours a hazy coppery color. Pretty much no head on it. This has a really nice nose. It’s got a bit of caramel malt, some vanilla, oak and some fruitiness also. The taste is also very good. It has a subdued sweetness from the caramel malt, notes of the vanilla, oak, some faint cherry. This is really an excellent barleywine.

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Photo of hardy008
4.16/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 Vintage

Pours a copper color with a one finger light beige head, with good retention and spotty lacing. The aroma has caramel, citrus, oak, and vanilla. Smells nice.

Tastes sweet with caramel, toffee, citrus, vanilla, and dark cherries. The alcohol is noticeable, but not intrusive. Has a nice warming effect on a cold winter night.

Medium bodied with soft carbonation, with a caramel and toffee aftertaste. Overall a nice beer. Too bad it is listed as retired. I would like to try this again.

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Oak Aged Barleywine from The Schlafly Tap Room
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 597 ratings