Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Barleywine | Central Waters Brewing Co.

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Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel BarleywineBrewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Barleywine
BA SCORE
4.31/5
Outstanding
2,410 Ratings
Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel BarleywineBrewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Barleywine
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Central Waters Brewing Co.
Wisconsin, United States
centralwaters.com

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Aged for 1 year in used bourbon barrels.

Added by Atron67 on 03-02-2008

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#496
Reviews:
659
Ratings:
2,410
pDev:
8.58%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
711
Gots:
749
Trade:
92
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 2,410 |  Reviews: 659
Photo of Narthax
4/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of UWBadgerFan4Life
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of CRJMellor
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of einman
4.36/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Rollzroyce21
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of Onenote81
4.35/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2009. [Score: 4.03]

Poured into a snifter. Pours a tawny, rusty amber with just a sheet of lace on top. Good amount of bubbles rising up, even after 3 years in the dark. The aroma has a slight musty scent, but the oak and vanilla come through on the finish. Subtle bourbon notes invite me to partake.

Heavy feel as this one is a sipper. Rich, syrup-like feel coats the palate. The bourbon character has held its own after time passed. It may not be as powerful, but there are nice sweet flavors of vanilla, caramel, toffee noted. The hop presence has faded, but there still lingers hints of bitterness that round out the sweet character of this one.

This beer was a treat to sip. Would have been great to do a side-by-side with a '12, but I can't have everything...

[Edit: Fresh '13 bottle consumed on 6/7/13. Thanks to wyatt13!]

Poured into a tulip. Pours a cloudy mahogany with a thin beige head on top. Nose is bursting with bourbon, wood, vanilla, toffee. Really nice. Smooth feel. A bit heavy, but for the style, that's okay. This beer is like liquid butterscotch. Some caramel, toffee, vanilla beans, sweet bourbon. Double dang. This beer is amazing. This beer is meant to be consumed fresh from my experience. Loved it. Thanks, Wyatt!

 1,256 characters

Photo of thewimperoo
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of Hanzo
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of CuriousMonk
4.24/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz bottle (2011 vintage) into a snifter glass. Pours hazy and dark red appearance with a small tan head. Decent thin lacing throughout. There was a rich, thick caramel, bourbon aroma along with dark fruit like plums, good amount of toffee, and vanilla. The flavor is quite rich and fairly boozy from the bourbon especially when the beer warms up, but nice. There’s a ton of dark fruit- plums, figs, dark grapes, dates- in the flavor along with a ton of vanilla, oak, sweet booze, and toffee. Sticky medium mouthfeel. Overall a very fine example of a barleywine. Look forward to the next try!

 607 characters

Photo of StoutAtTheDevil
4/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Damian
4.34/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Drank from a 12 fluid oz bottle acquired in a trade with surge1311
Vintage: 2013
Served in a snifter

The nearly crystal clear, copper-mahogany liquid was topped by small, light tan crown that quickly faded to a ring of bubbles. Droplets of lacing clung to the glass.

The aroma was really intense and complex. Candied fruits came through strong. Quite sweet and boozy overall with a robust caramel malt presence. Lots of toffee and brown sugar. Good dose of vanilla. As the beer warmed, the bourbon and vanilla notes really intensified.

A stiff, caramel malt backbone led things off in the flavor profile. Toffee, brown sugar and candied fruits were apparent. Bourbon notes hit hard mid-palate. Loads of vanilla as well. The bitter, boozy finish was super hoppy and contained strong notes of pine sap and orange peel. A bit sharp for my liking.

The mouthfeel was somewhat lighter than I anticipated, but the super fine and zippy effervescence lent the beer an exceedingly creamy and smooth frothiness. After every sip, the liquid left a slightly sticky film on my lips.

Central Waters's Bourbon Barrel Barleywine Ale is an interesting and complex beer that makes for a perfect sipper on a cold winter night. I aged my bottle for a year, but I feel that even more time might help mellow out some of the booziness and the bitterness on the finish.

 1,349 characters

Photo of Soneast
4.2/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Bottled February 2010.

Pours a clear, burnt copper in color, developing a small fizzy head that disappears immediately leaving just a thin, bubbly ring.

The aroma has a lot of malt character, almost (but not quite) overwhelmed by the bourbon qualities. Some brown sugars and caramel aroma are evident, with a touch of wood and marshmallows coming through but mostly dominated by a rich bourbon smell.

The flavor is intensely delicious! Brown sugar, malt characteristics stand out first, rich caramel and creamy vanilla qualities are less perceptible, the barrel aged qualities come through in an oakey, bourbony flavor that encompasses everything else. A very nice, smooth finish, without much heat nor overly bitter. I dig it!

The mouthfeel is spot on for the style, very mild carbonation with a rich, creamy texture. The flavors of this beer combined so nicely, nothing really overwhelming the other components (unlike some other barrel aged beers, that basically taste like carbonated Maker's Mark). CW's Bourbon Barrel Barleywine is well balanced and delicious. I have high expectations for this beer with some age on it.

 1,129 characters

Photo of emmasdad
4.28/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours the color of a rusty copper penny, with a good three fingers of light beige foam. Aromas of bourbon, oak, vanilla and cinnamon. Flavors of bourbon, dark caramel, dark fruits and vanilla. A very nicely put together beer. I love the way barley wines are helped with the addition of the bourbon barrels. An excellent example of the style.

 341 characters

Photo of jsanford
4.12/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a Snifter. 2010 vintage.

A - Pours a dark orange-brown with a thin white head that fades to a slight ring and whispy haze.
S - Sweet aromas of caramel malt and candied orange peel with strong Bourbon notes of caramel, oak, and vanilla. Reminds me a bit of those sugar-and-caramel candied that I love so much (cept boozier!).
T - Big and malty with lots of caramel, a touch of chocolate, bitter citrus hops, and a whole bunch of Bourbon that lingers on the palate for some time. Still quite boozy, I'm surprised this hasn't smoothed out more, but I'm not really minding it.
M - Sticky and sweet, with a fairly full mouthfeel and lowish carbonation. So decadent.
O - A really nice Bourbon-forward Barleywine, such a treat!

 745 characters

Photo of thampel09
4.75/5  rDev +10.2%

Photo of Jspriest
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of TomMorris
4.24/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of PHBoiler
3.5/5  rDev -18.8%

Photo of JohnK17
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of ThePorterSorter
4/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of SaisonRichBiere
4.27/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of thebigredone
4.39/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I've had this beer ever since attending the CW Anniversary party earlier this year, not sure what took me so long to give it a try.

Appearance is pretty cool, verry reddish when held to the light.

Smell is great, typical CW bourbon barrel treatment.

Taste is excellent, a slight bitterness on the tongue and then the bourbon takes over. Roasty malt notes take over, and then a tinge of sweetness on the finish.

Mouthfeel is solid.

Overall, and excellent beer, and definitely a sipper. I enjoy the dominance of the bourbon and roast, as opposed to the cloying sweetness sometimes found in a bareywine. Well done CW!

 620 characters

Photo of MNBeerGeek
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of FriedSlug
4.21/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Deep reddish caramel color with an off white to light tan head. The aroma is sweet and boozy with malt, caramel, toffee, vanilla, oak and bourbon. The taste is amazing with vanilla, oak, coconut, bourbon, and some dark fruits. The finish is bitter and a bit hot but nice. This is a really tasty beer.

 300 characters

Photo of woemad
4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle courtesy of the largesse of @Ri0. My first Central Waters beer, and it’s a big one. 2016 vintage.

Poured into a River City snifter, this was a dark, muddy, russet sort of color, taking on more of a rubyish hue when held up to light. Modest, sudsy beige colored head. Not a huge head, which wasn’t surprising, given the beer’s potency, but what there was showed surprising staying power once it receded to a foamy collar. Beer neglige-type lace.

Boozy and sweet aroma, initially, more or less as I expected. As it warmed, I picked out elements of caramel and dark fruit in addition to the bourbon and oak notes present from the start. There’s some more bready malts, too. While more complex than some of the style I have known, the most overriding sense given off by the aroma is that of a big, boozy barrel aged beer, which is, after all, what it is.

Whoa! This may be a 2016 vintage, but, damn, it’s smooove. I was expecting an alcoholically hot beer. That’s there, to be sure, but it’s behind a curtain of more subtly sweet and smoky flavors (one gets the feeling it’s barely being held in check, in fact). The booze and oakiness is most prominent at the finish, but not to the point where it’s overwhelming. This might not be the case if it were in a 22oz format, so Central Waters should be applauded for doing more with less, in that regard (now that’s pretty much the only way the word less could appear in the context of this beer).

Full bodied, with a rich, coating mouthfeel.

Tasty, yet in a very real sense, on the verge of being undrinkable, and would be if just a tad less mellow. I’d love to sock some of this away and revisit it on a yearly basis.

 1,702 characters

Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Barleywine from Central Waters Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.31 out of 5 with 2,410 ratings
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