Olde School
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

Olde SchoolOlde School
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Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States
American Barleywine
Ranked #130
Ranked #11,335
3.99 | pDev: 12.28%
Monday at 12:04 AM
Oct 10, 2002
Bold, yet smooth! Fermented with dates and figs, this bone-crushing barleywine has a unique flavor.

85 IBU
ABV varies from 13-16%.
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Photo of vurt
Reviewed by vurt from Oregon

3.64/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
2017 vintage, on tap at Orenco Taphouse on their last day of business (at least at this location). Enjoyed in a tulip. The Digital Pour board shows an ABV of 15% for this vintage.

The beer is a murky burnt orange color, capped with a thin head of buff colored foam. The head quickly shrank to a long-lasting collar that leaves patchy lacing.

The nose is full of figs, sweet malt, caramel, and burnt brown sugar. Oxidation is evident but not unpleasant.

Flavor follows the nose, with additional notes of orange peel, freshly ground black pepper, roasted strawberries, cherries, and cocoa. It has a subtle flavor that I can't describe but is characteristic of all Dogfish Head beers I've sampled through the years. Oxidation is prominent. Earthy bitterness is impressive.

Body is medium-heavy, smooth, and slightly with moderate carbonation and prickly alcohol heat.

It's been almost 15 years since the last time I tried this beer. I'm glad for the chance to have it again. This is definitely an old-school barley wine, reminiscent of Doggie Claws or maybe an English-style Bigfoot. Tasty!
Monday at 12:04 AM
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Rated by johnnnniee from New Hampshire

3.75/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
Sampled at a tasters choice get together on 11/19/2023. A big thanks to whomever shared this.
Sunday at 07:27 PM
Rated: 4.95 by Avitra from California

Feb 15, 2023
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Rated by KensWorld from Florida

4.04/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
2013 vintage bottle i think? smooth but somewhat boring.
Dec 27, 2022
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Reviewed by donspublic from Texas

4.28/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Poured from bottle into tulip, no head little to no lacing. Reddish/amber in the glass, little light passes thru. Malt, figs, raisins and a big dose of caramel on the nose. Big syrupy caramel on the front, followed by dried fruit, figs, raisin. Drinks a little sweet, could use a tad bit more bitterness on the finish, but not going to complain here. Good residual of caramel, fig and raisin on the palate. Slight heat on the finish but not obnoxious.
Nov 08, 2022
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Reviewed by brewandbbq from New Hampshire

4.24/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
750ml from 2003.

Pours clear, dark copper with only a few bubbles of head with an aggressive pour. Zero retention or lacing. Pure, plump malt juice in the nose with shades of fig and caramel. Medium bodied with a slick, syrupy mouthfeel. Dead flat. Juicy malt on the palate with mild warmth on the throat. Finishes with lingering malt, figs, and faint booze.
Oct 24, 2022
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Reviewed by FBarber from Illinois

4.39/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
2012 bottle.

Pours a mostly clear dark burgundy color. Thin off-white head forms and then dissipates pretty quickly. Aroma has notes of brown sugar, cardboard, dark fruits, and some rich malty notes.

Taste has notes of brown sugar, rich malts, dark fruits, molasses, brown sugar, a touch of cardboard, and some earthy notes. The dark fruits and brown sugar are so rich and developed in this beer - it's amazing how well they have developed and harmonized over time. Feel is smooth, rich, medium bodied. Moderate carbonation.

Overall this is a gem of a beer. This bottle is 10 years old, and yet its aged gracefully and is absolutely delicious.
Mar 06, 2022
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Rated by FxB

3.86/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4
2017 vintage and it looks, smells, and tastes great! It still feels a bit hot to me. I am looking forward to this in another year or two.
Feb 06, 2022
Rated: 4.23 by DBosco from Massachusetts

Jan 26, 2022
Rated: 4.07 by mothmanscott from Georgia

Jan 03, 2022
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Rated by Spirgili_Klump

4.96/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5
My favorite, but where to buy it now?
Dec 12, 2021
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Reviewed by CTHomer from Connecticut

4.18/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
A: opaque; amber colored; 1 finger off white head that receded quickly to a thin collar; almost no lacing;

S: dark fruit; sweet malt; alcohol;

T: follows the nose with a bit of vanilla added in from the middle through the finish;

M: medium to full bodied; light to moderate carbonation; alcohol is soft and warming - not hot at all;

O: a great sipping beer;
Sep 15, 2021
Rated: 4 by Fettpopps from Massachusetts

Jul 20, 2021
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Reviewed by SHODriver from North Carolina

4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
A: Poured into a snifter to a deep golden brown which is topped by a dense and slightly rocky cream colored head which fades slowly to a collar around the glass with minimal lacing
S: Smells of faded piny hops, toffee, caramel, and brown sugar
T: Taste is faded piney hops which gives way to caramel, dates, brown sugar and toffee, hints of toasted malts as well along with just enough bitterness to keep things somewhat balanced. On the swallow there's a bit of alcohol before the piney hops come back with some slight earthy notes and some muted lingering sweetness comes in with notes of caramel and brown sugar
M: This beer has a body which is somewhat syrupy and on the heavier side of medium. Carbonation is fairly soft and muted, but it is there while the beer has a slightly drying finish
O: Overall this is a pretty solid beer. Really nice flavors and some solid complexity. I've been sitting on this bottle for about four years and it seems to have held up well aside from the finish being a little muted.
Jun 30, 2021
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Reviewed by Sigmund from Norway

3.31/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25
12 fl. oz. bottle, thanks to my son Steinar. Orange to amber coloured beer, clear first, hazy when the sediment is poured in the end. Big off-white head with an orangey hue. Strong aroma of malts with vinous notes, oak, alcohol and molasses. The flavour is intensely sweet and alcoholic, notes of oak and figs, with a certain peppery and hoppy bite which nearly disappears behind the alcoholic sweetness. You don’t expect a 15% beer to be "easy drinking", and this one certainly isn’t. Too sweet for me, still quite impressive. Would probably improve by aging.
Apr 30, 2021
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Rated by Belthorm from Pennsylvania

4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
Apr 18, 2021
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Reviewed by Viaduck from California

4.24/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4
The bottle was dated 2013 & was part of the 2021 Extreme Beer Fest. I could never wait 8 years for a beer to age. Pours a pretty shade of brown that is darker towards the bottom, missing a head. Aroma: caramel. Sweet taste. Flavors: Brown sugar, molasses, figs, caramel, boozy. This was the last beer tasted & at 15% I really enjoyed it but I forgot to finish my review.
Mar 19, 2021
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Reviewed by MartyMaltose from Washington

4.48/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5
2007 12 oz. bottle. Thanks Malt & Vine in Redmond, WA for being smart enough to keep these for all these years. I'll come back to see if you have some more.

Look: hazy with no head to speak of. Pretty disappointing getting started.
Smell: fresh and zesty, very enticing!
Taste: wheeeew! Strong and syrupy at first. Fruity esters much? Unbelievable. Then it starts settling, and settling, and you get in a groove...the alcohol starts taking over and I'm in love.
Feel: average. Who cares? This was AWESOME.
Mar 14, 2021
Photo of vectornut
Reviewed by vectornut from California

4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Starts off with an amazing color and a really appetizing aroma. Taking a sip reveals a delicious, complex flavor and leaves a pleasant tingling sensation in my mouth.
Mar 12, 2021
Photo of Siriusfisherman
Reviewed by Siriusfisherman from New Hampshire

3.96/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
A really good barleywine, the way the fig and dates integrate into the flavor profile is wonderful. The beer was a tad sweet, but at 15% that is to be expected. One of the stars of the '21 extreme beer fest.
Mar 10, 2021
Olde School from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 2781 ratings