Schlafly Oak Aged Barleywine | The Schlafly Tap Room

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Schlafly Oak Aged BarleywineSchlafly Oak Aged Barleywine
Very Good
587 Ratings
Schlafly Oak Aged BarleywineSchlafly Oak Aged Barleywine

Brewed by:
The Schlafly Tap Room
Missouri, United States

Style: English Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

Added by maxpower on 11-22-2002

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 587 |  Reviews: 276
Photo of drabmuh
3.65/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Again, this was on draft so I'm not sure of the vintage although someone told me it was 2008, I cannot confirm this.

Beer is brown and slightly hazy. Lots and lots of lacing on the glass but the carbonation itself is only moderate. The head is white and broken.

Strong liquor aroma.

Mouthfeel on this beer is moderately medium to chewy at times. I can't really get my head or palate around it. Its spicy at times and malty at times, its a confusion of ingredients and flavors. No connectivity. I drank it fast to get rid of it. Not my favorite.

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Photo of AJacob81
3.18/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On-tap at Churchkey in our nation's capital. Served in a snifter.

A - Deep, golden copper with a thin, lively off-white head and delicate lacing. A great-looking barleywine.

S - Great bouquet of fruity aromas and baking bread. Plums, oranges, a little bit of cherry.

T - Starts wonderfully, with flavors present in the nose hitting right away. However, these are quickly replaced by what I assume is the oak barrel, but in this tasting it came across as an almost coconut-like flavor. A very jarring transition, and it completely changed my experience with this beer after just a couple of sips.

M - Decent texture, but the alcohol burn soon becomes prominent, and not in a very pleasant way. Very dry in the back of the throat. Low carbonation isn't masking the increasingly unpleasant taste at all.

D - The coconutesque flavor of the oak and the booze overwhelm the more subtle flavors as the beer warms. I finished it rather quickly, but not because I was particularly enjoying it. Highly disappointing.

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Photo of chaz01
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

One of several beers I took notes on at Dark Lord Day -- 22 ounce bottle served into a 3 ounce tasting glass.

A: Light amber color with a thin wispy white head that leaves some lacing on the glass.

S: Fruity and sweet aroma of plums, cherries and figs.

T: More fruit flavors in the taste with some woody oak characteristics. A bit tart, maybe even sour, aftertaste.

M: Medium bodied with just the right carbonation.

D: Lots of fruity and oak flavors makes me interested in trying this again, but the slight sourness didn't sit well with me and I'm not sure if that tartness was intended or not.

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Photo of Exiled
4.35/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle - 2007 Vintage - Thanks to Siebenmorgen for this bottle!

Pours a amber color with a small off white head. Smell is vanilla, oak, and caramel malt. Taste has tons of vanilla, oak, caramel malt, and a lil chocolate. Med-full mouthfeel, and drinks very well for as big as it is. Overall, this is one of the best, and most complex barleywines I have ever had.

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Photo of ccrida
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 vintage poured into my Delirium snifter, Schlafly Reserve Barleywine is a pleasantly glowing ruby with a light sand colored head that leaves nice lace.

Smell is lots of coconut, sweet, strong alcohol, fairly spicy, with the caramel opening nicely.

Taste is very sweet, huge coconut oakiness, some cured fruits, rather phenolic, giving it a Belgianesque feel, a bit of tangerine.

Mouthfeel is pretty slick, not to heavy, with a dry finish.

Drinkability pretty good, big oak in the barelywine, definitely in the continental style, rich and tasty. This puppy is big though, so no rushing it.

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Photo of Tone
4.32/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy, dark amber color. 3/4 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and good lacing. Smells of strong hops, alcohol, sweet malt, citrus, and fresh flowers. Fits the style of a Barleywine. Mouth feel is smooth and slightly thick with an average carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, alcohol, yeast, citrus, and slight hops. Overall, a great blend, body, nice complexity, and served, of course, at an amazing cask temperature.

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Photo of DefenCorps
3.45/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

czoch75 sent me this ages ago. Thanks, Clint!

The pour is quite attractive, a glowing orange-amber with a dense, off-white head with great retention and lacing. The nose is quite massive with raw oak, big brown sugar and some caramel. Faded citrus hops are present as well. The wood is very prominent, and the alcohol isn't particularly well-hidden either. Bready, this is solid. The palate opens with a big combination of alcohol, wood and sweetness. Despite the sweetness, this doesn't get cloying, thanks to the massive oak flavors present here. Vanilla appears in the mid-palate as the nuances of the malt appear with a mild nutty, mild toffee character. Astringent and tannic on the finish, there's a lot more wood in this than I'd like - and this from someone who loves Fred FTW. Full in body, low in carbonation with a creamy feel, this is solid stuff, just not my cup of tea, though. The alcohol heat comes across more like rocket fuel than a boozy heat, and that hurts this beer.

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Photo of Tilley4
3.54/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

2008 vintage into a standard pint glass...

Pours a very viscous murky burgundy-brown with a surprisingly small and quickly disapearing head... Settles down into this thick vile looking liquid... Not exactly a prize to look at...

Very good aromas of the oakiness, the sweet fruitiness of the malts, and a big wallop of booze... This is actually one of the strong points of this brew, I thought... I was hoping for at least a remnant of hop presence but I'm not getting anything at all.. Guess time has faded them out comletely...

Huge booziness up front that mixes with the sweet fruity maltiness in a rather unpleasant way... I know this one is a couple years old now but its really lost something... There's no spark here at all... Its rather bland after the initial rush and finishes quite dry.. It is very creamy and has a nice thickness to it which helps some but doesn't salvage this one for me...

I'm guessing that, if fresh, this one would be loaded with hoppy goodness but as is, it just seems faded and past its prime...

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Photo of cpetrone84
4.35/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008 Vintage on the Bottle

A-thick off white head that dissipates rather quickly; but leaves a huge and thick lacing on the glass. The beer is a golden copper color, translucent with a hint of haze

S-the nose is quite big and brings a lot of the barrels they have been aged in. A nice vanilla oaky scent starts it off with bourbon coming in next. Caramel and burnt brown sugar bring up the rear to sweeten up the nose. The barrel notes definitely dominate

T-the taste is very good and well blended, the oak and bourbon fade into the other flavors very well here. The start brings a nice caramel malt and hints of brown sugar, some dark fruits follow with hints of dark cherry and plum as this fades into sweet oak and vanilla and just a hint of bourbon at the finish.

M-full body, thick, creamy. Perfect carbonation to give it a nice full finish, the alcohol does show itself at the finish; but not much at all.

D-this is blended together very well as all of the flavors are nicely present. It is a malt forward beer lacking much of hop presence. There is a touch of hops at the finish; but mostly malt throughout. The barrel aging is done splededly and really works well with the big malt flavors!

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Photo of augustgarage
4.19/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to monsterfat for this one. As others have noted, the packaging/presentation is a really nice touch with the printed box and all...

2007 Vintage; poured from a 750mL bottle into a snifter.

Brilliantly clear fire brick liquid soothes the senses. An isabelline crown persists and leaves luxurious cascades of sandy lacing - those bubbles that stick rest atop viscous legs suggesting snow dusted mountain peaks.

Aroma is highly potent - it hits you from the moment the seal is popped. In the glass, the aroma is a superior mix of oak and malt. It is very difficult to dissect as it is much more than the sum of its parts. Brown sugar, high quality aged sherry, vanilla, coconut, dense brown bread, faint clove...the list goes on.

The flavor suggests a blend of barrel aged beers, bringing to mind the Firestone anniversary releases. The flavor profile closely follows the aromatics, but everything is present in a lesser degree. Lots of flavors come and go - abbreviated tastes of bread crusts, licorice, and dried tropical fruit. The finish is quite nutty and hints at leather as well. A little hot maybe from the alcohol notes, but they contribute some bourbon-preserved jam esters...

Slightly thin, but moderate carbonation keeps the drinkability up. Almost like an armagnac it is a beer well suited to contemplation. The oak notes contribute a great deal without becoming overwhelming (Brandy Barrel Angel's Share I'm lookin' at you).

Definitely worth seeking out and sticking in the cellar...

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
3.73/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter from a 1 Pt. 9 oz bottle. 2009 edition.

A - Poured a beautiful dar amber color with a slight haze. There is a thin off white head that recedes quickly and leaves little to no lacing. The pour was very oily.

S - Sweet pineapple with hints of pears. Nice malt grain backbone that is full of dark fruity sugars.

T - Very sweet offering. Pineapple is present on the tongue like crazy. Very sweet alcoholic esters that are warming. The pineapple-like flavor is intense and surprising. The hop character is almost non existent. There is a slight bitterness at the end but it might be overwhelmed by some of the alcoholic warmth. As the beer warms the flavors come alive alive a bit more. Not my favorite.

M - Light bodied for the pour but complex flavors.

D - not very high. Too sweet and higher ABV. IMO.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours out a near-clear, amber-hued body with a small-sized, thin, off-white head.

Smell: Sweet-scented aroma of light caramel, golden syrup, oil-coated citrus peels, and just an additional bit of dried fruitiness along with a prominent oakiness and even some fusel alcohol wafting around in the nose.

Taste: Lightly caramelized malts layered in sweet, sticky treacle. Leafy, citrusy dose of hops deliver a fair amount of bitterness. Hint of golden raisins. The moderate oak wood character imparts some vanilla, just a touch of tannins and an overall dryness to the brew that carries you to the warming finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Mild, low level of carbonation.

Drinkability: A solid offering. While the desert-like dryness and alcohol won't deter its drinkability, it may slow you down a bit (it did me), but it's still an enjoyable brew, which is what counts, right?

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Photo of weeare138
4.32/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 version...
Appears a red/orange with a small white cap that slowly fades into a small head. Spotty bits of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of coconuts, cashews, caramel, and vanilla.
Taste is of the aromas with sweet malt, ripe fruit, oak, caramel, and booze.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, chewy, with boozy bourbon sticking around in the finish.

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Photo of slasher007
4.42/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to exiled for sharing this bottle.

Pours a hazy amber color with a tiny amount of head with a good lacing. Aromas of dark fruits, vanilla, toffee, caramel, and some floral & citrus hops. Taste is very mellow with caramel malts, sweet dark fruit, raisin, mild cherry, toffee, and the oak comes through really nice in the finish. little boozy too. Really nice taste. Great carbonation, which tingled in your mouth. Excellent beer.

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Photo of Deuane
3.9/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Ray and Cornelia for breaking out this 2006 vintage of Reserve Barrel Aged Barleywine. Shared with Ffejherb, Brewslut and SierraGs.

A-Slightly hazed dark copper with a thin off-white ring that held on and left decent lace.

S-Light notes of sweet caramel malt, a touch of oak astringency and some faint hop spice. Not overly aromatic.

T-A surprising spicy kick with a sweet caramel malt body that never becomes excessive. Subtle notes of nuttiness, oak and star anise in the drying finish.

M-Medium bodied and VERY smooth. This ends with a nice flourish of oak astringency and earthy spiciness.

D-A nice fireside sipper. Mellow and smooth the 3+ years of aging has treated this bottle nicely. Nothing spectacular here but solid without question.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4.47/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a nice,clear copper with a small off-white head. Nose is light but has a wood and malty scent. Taste is think bodied for a bwine with a definite wood flavor with some sugar, syrup. Mouthfeel is caramel with a definite alcohol taste. I still found it light bodied for a bwine. Epected maltier, more complex. I think it was a better than average bwine.
2007 consumed. Wow. This bwine has really developed and the oak, caramel combo is outstanding, even after 3 years its capable of several more and still tasty. Holds up very well and better w/age.

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Photo of DavidSeanNJ
3.93/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Beautiful 750 ml. Belgian style bottle. Very classy label/art on the front. Also presented in a very nice enticing box. I love when brewers put extra effort into the packaging.

2008 Vintage

Poured into an oversized wine glass very delicately. Filled about 1/4 of the glass and began the tasting.

A- Bright firey orange, ruby, creamy thin head. When swirrled a nice blanket of head covered the brew.

S- Initially it's booze. Faint vanilla and some tofee/candy.

T- Unfortuantely, I did not get much of that oak flavor that I have come to enjoy. The beer was very spicey- some licorice/taffy. Huge grainy/earthy presence. Malt/cream. More booze.

M- Creamy and thick for a BW. Carbonation on point.

D- This is a nice BW for the experienced BW drinker. I enjoyed it and would love to try again.

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Photo of Daniellobo
4.47/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A great oak aged US barleywine.

Presentation: 750 ml bottle. It comes in a cardboard box highlighting uniqueness, status, and maybe even protecting it from light. Cartographic classic dark design on the box. Somewhat lengthy historic narrative background with description of the style and intent of the brew. The bottle follows the box with a concise back description of ingredients and the suggestion of pairing it with spicy dishes and grilled meats. Bottling date as 2007 brew, shows Alc. by Vol. (10.2%) Poured into a snifter.

A - Deep amber body with a creamy head. Medium to short retention with small touches of lace.

S - Malty and bready smell with a great vanilla/oak range of aromas.

T - Rich malty sweetness, caramel and toffee embracing the vanilla-oak character. Hops are almost unnoticeable until one lets the brew linger for a bit and they show up with the smoothest of nods at the end.

M - Medium body with soft carbonation. Very creamy and smooth, with a distant boozy warmth.

D - An extraordinary sipper. Beautifully drinkable for the style.

Notes: Another great reserve brew from Schlafly one to hold, cherish and enjoy.

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Photo of bnes09
4.1/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A deep ruby colored brew. Minimal head and sparce spots of lace.

Smell is spicy from the alcohol with a bit of bourbon in the aroma.

Taste is rich and sweet with hints of prune and grape juice. Alcohol comes through to deliver a spicy bite to the tongue and a warming sensation. Hops are subtle with pine notes and somewhat masked behind the bold malty flavor. Also, mellows out slightly as it warms.

Thick, full-bodied texture. Very rich and filling with just a touch of carbonation.

The high alcohol content definetly slows your pace down while drinking (which is not necessarily a bad thing.) It is quite a treat to be savored! I would visit the tap room at Schlafly's again to get a fresh glass or buy a bottle and age it for a year or two (if I can resist drinking it for that long.)

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Photo of budgood1
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2008 Vintage. 25.4 ounce bottle.

pours out a clear dark amber/sienna colour with a thin but stable off white head. wispy lace. aroma is subtle but with a definite oak barrel noce and other light fruity notes and sugary malty hints. taste is again strong in the barrel flavours of brandy and bourbon. lots of sugary malt flavours with a relatively neutral, bready yeasty note. hop bitterness and flavour peaks in stays in the background. a bit nutty...kind of crackery...vanilla notes wane in and out...alcohol spice fills in the cracks with a boozy finish and belly warming goodness. i'd like to wax poetic, but nothing really stands out. full bodied and semi-silky smooth on the tongue with an overall agreeable mouthfeel. nice drinkability...a good sipper. definitely does not drink like a +10 ABV ale!

another subtle if not a bit sublime offering from schlafly. after the RIS last night, and the barleywine's apparent that they are going for balanced, subtle notes rather than whacking you over the head. in fact, these reserve beers just might be a bit too timid for my liking. regardless...this is enjoyable. just not exciting.

thanks again to my brother who brought this and the RIS to me over thanksgiving.

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Photo of Mora2000
4.42/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Exiled for sharing this bottle.

2007 vintage. Pours a cloudy brown with no head. The smell is strong on the caramel malt with some oak character. No hops are detectable. Wow, is the flavor ever different than the smell. Where was all of that vanilla hiding? In addition to vanilla, you also get some oak, caramel malt and some alcohol, but the vanilla is the star of the show. Medium mouthfeel and low carbonation. Excellent barleywine and one of the most unique I have had.

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Photo of KI9A
4.15/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2009 at the Taproom. Have had the previous vintages, but, never fresh, on tap. This was really nice fresh!

A: Hazy dark brown, not much head in to a snifter.

S: Nice nose of toffee, caremel, sweet malts.

T: Vanilla, caramel. Sweet apple, slightly bourbon/boozy.

M: Boozyness dominates, but, coats mouth with a nice, not clying sweetness.

D: Well. 10%+ abv. But, having said that, it is amazingly drinkable. Never had one of these fresh, but, with some age, teh boozyness tends to mellow. Gotta admit, I really like it fresh!

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Photo of ffejherb
3.73/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2006 vintage 750ml bottle. This was the REserve BA Barleywine on oak. Thanks to alekeep for sharing!

A - Poured a hazy dark amber/orange body with one-finger white frothy head that transformed into thin, sheet-like lacing around the glass.

S - Faint nose for a barleywine with traces of sweet malt suggesting caramel and toffee. Slight licorice notes eventually emerge as well. Hop presence is very subdued.

T - Mellow and subtle malt character with hints of caramel and toffee. Bitterness is minimal at best, with a mild tea-like, herbal aspect. However, this isn't overly alcoholic or oxidized. Finishes with a tinge of earthy flavor.

M - Medium bodied with subtle carbonation and a syrupy texture. Finishes with a hint of sourness amidst muted hop bitterness on the palate.

D - I found this to be a mature barleywine that really mellowed nicely with some age on it.

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Photo of Torps
3.9/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2007 Vintage. Pours a reddish, honey brown. 1 finger head that dissipates quickly. Light lacing. Alcohol, peach, currants, yeast, and malt. Reminds me of a belgian. Sugar candy, fruity and yeasty. Goes down easy despite the apparent high ABV. Carbonation is spot on and the bottle was more than easy to finish.

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Photo of Hojaminbag
3.9/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2007 vintage.
Over a year ago I picked up a bottle of the Schlafly Reserve stout in a trade, and it was good enough that when I saw this barleywine in the store I decided to give it a try also (after a few visits to the store where I shied away from the 12.99 price tag anyway).

The body is a slightly hazy russet color that still has some nice movement from carbonation bubbles going on. The head is about a finger and a half thick, but it has a very solid, dense look about it, and consequently the retention is very good, as is the lacing.

The aroma has all kinds of sweetness to it; from big malts to figs and plums. Perhaps a bit of a brandy-like flavor. Even in the aroma I notice the oak as a big, woody, nutty scent. There is a bit of sourness in there also.

This beer starts off wonderful and ends in an extremely boozy mess that makes you feel like you've just taken a shot (maybe a mixed type of shot that isn't quite so powerful-that counts right? It's still some form of shot). The front end of this been has all kinds of flavors though; The first come through first, some figs and prunes, but also a slightly tart, dark cherry flavor that is excellent. The fruit notes are really interesting and complex, and the hint of sourness works really well in my opinion. After that the oak comes through with a good mix of wood an nuts. After that the flavor is all alcohol, heat, and booze; it goes down like brandy, and tastes like brandy also. If you told me that this beer was aged in brandy barrels instead of on oak, I would definitely believe it. The aftertaste is actually pretty good though: think brandy with a touch of tobacco.

As this beer warms the heat from the alcohol dies down a bit, making it more manageable, which is good because the first few sips really blew me away with alcohol.

The mouthfeel is pretty light bodied with a moderate carbonation. For a beer that is two years old you would expect the opposite, which bodes well for aging this one a few more years.

This is a big-ass beer, so it's no surprise that you won't be chugging this one. However, Schlafly Reserve barleywine was a enjoyable drink and I had was happy to finish the bottle.

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Schlafly Oak Aged Barleywine from The Schlafly Tap Room
Beer rating: 3.94 out of 5 with 587 ratings