Old Backus Barleywine | Free State Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
93
outstanding
242 Ratings
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Old Backus BarleywineOld Backus Barleywine
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Free State Brewing Co.
Kansas, United States
freestatebrewing.com

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Bronze Medal Winner, 1997 World Beer Championships - Barleywines.

Old Backus contains just over 2,000 pounds of malt and 55 pounds of hops. The original gravity is 25.6 P/1092 which contributes to an alcohol content of 10.5% by volume. This is a tremendously complex beer that should be savoured slowly and in moderation. It will continue to change with age as it is served unfiltered.

This barleywine is named after Richard Backus, an old friend to the Brewery.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-29-2001

BEER STATS
Ratings:
242
Reviews:
93
Avg:
4.24
pDev:
10.61%
 
 
Wants:
196
Gots:
43
For Trade:
6
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 242 |  Reviews: 93
Photo of Lucoli
3.96/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of oline73
3.97/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the growler into a tasting snifter.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy reddish amber with a small amount of off white head that goes away rather quickly.

Smell: This is really sweet and full of caramel and grain. I'm getting a lot of dark fruit along with a mild banana note.

Taste: This is a really sweet barleywine. Lots of caramel like malt. The mild banana shows up here as well. A strong dark fruit note here along with the sweetness. The finish is sweet, but there is a solid hop presence as well.

Mouthfeel: The body is syrupy with a few tingles of carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: I would say that the main story here is the sweetness. I'd have more if it was offered.

 691 characters

Photo of Beerando
3.98/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Photo of Tone
3.99/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy, brown color. 1/2 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and good lacing. Smells of alcohol, sweet malt, slight caramel malt, hint of sugar, slight biscuit, and slight yeast. Fits the style of an American Barleywine. Mouth feel is sharp and clean, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of alcohol, sweet malt, slight caramel malt, slight biscuit, yeast, and a hint of hop. Overall, good body an appearance, decent aroma, but only average complexity.

 485 characters

Photo of JasonFromLA
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of dtx00
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of dvmin98
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of JuicesFlowing
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a balloon glass.

Look: The body is a thick, syrupy-looking ruby mahogany color. The head is tan and recedes to a cirrus cloud wisp. Surprisingly good lacing coats the glass.

Aroma: Massive malt notes, bourbon, faint honey.

Taste: Very medicinal tasting up front with bourbon and a heavy malt bill. Somewhere in the middle, a touch of honey-like sweetness roams around. Bitter hops come in the finish offering a tangy, bitter balance.

Mouthfeel: Heavy, syrupy.

Overall: I've never had a beer that resembled cough syrup so much. I'm not sure if that's an insult or a compliment.

 593 characters

Photo of zac16125
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a snifter
no bottling dates

Thanks to mikeincharleston for hooking me up with this one!

A: Pours a dark copper with ruby hues when held to light, good clarity. Just over 1 fingers width of light tan head builds and then dissipates away fairly quickly. Leaves a few small patches of lacing. 4.25

S: Very nice aroma of sweetness, hops, and booze. Candied sugar, toffee. Lots of hoppy characters, with citrus and piney notes. 4.25

T: Nice combo of malts and hops. Citrus, some fruity characters, pine, booze. Good, but flavors aren’t as intense as many in the style, nor is it as complex as I look for in the style. 3.75

M/D: Medium body, appropriate carbonation, fairly smooth, ABV is noticeable but its not hot, drinkability is very good. 4.25

O: Good beer, but I was disappointed. I had very high expectations for this one, considering it was a top 5 barleywine on BA for years. It certainly didn’t live up to that, but tasty nonetheless. Glad I got to finally try it. Thanks Mike! 4

 1,026 characters

Photo of ygtbsm94
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of SeatsTaken
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of drewone
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of Khazadum
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of mikeincharleston
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of Houser
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of BeerHunter76
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of seeswo
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of dfhhead25
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Texasfan549
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of Punisher
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of acslatersbtb
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of 22Blue
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of KAF
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of BMart
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of tykechandler
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Old Backus Barleywine from Free State Brewing Co.
4.24 out of 5 based on 242 ratings.
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