Blue Point Old Howling Bastard | Blue Point Brewing Company

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Blue Point Old Howling BastardBlue Point Old Howling Bastard

Brewed by:
Blue Point Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our special barley wine is made with English 2-row barley and Vienna malt. Its robust, malty, caramel flavor is balanced by lots and lots of hops, giving it a great depth of character.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-19-2002

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Reviews: 140 | Ratings: 300
Photo of Thickfreakness
4.67/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours the color of fall into my DFH signature glass! Orange/Yellow/Brown with highlights of each depending on how you twist the glass! A peach tinted, 1 1/2 finger of foam lays on top... fades kinda quickly... but leaves a ton of spider webbing all around the glass! Damn near perfect to look at!

S- Sweet caramel, ripe apple, pungent and piney hops, with an underlying nose of fresh cut figs, prunes, raisins and brown sugar! I wish I could get a candle that smelled like this!

T- Exactally like the smell but with a nice bitterness from the hops. Sweet caramel/candy corn... fresh cut apple sourness, bready yeastiness, pie spices, and lovely dried fruit! Some vanilla and smokey wood notes underneath. This is fuckin' brilliant! One of my all time favorite BW's!!!

M- Chewy like buttered raisin bread. The sweet, sour, and bitter blend seemlessly together to create an almost fresh bread-like feel. Sometimes it's more caramel than apple... and the next sip is more buttered popcorn and fig!!! I don't believe this is aged on wood, but it has a nice vanilla/oakiness that really envelopes your tongue!

O- Damn near perfect! The bottle cap says 10th anniversary '99-'09, so I'm wondering if this had been sitting around for a couple of years developing into this... I've always loved this once a year brew... but this one, tonight... DAMN!!!

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Photo of lehows
4.52/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First off, this beer is NOT retired, and it never was...Anyway, poured a redish amber color, small but thick off-white head. Wonderful lacing and decent retention. Aromas of fruit, hops, alcohol tinged sweetness, and caramel. Taste hits you up-front with a sweet alcohol quality, sharp hops, smoked wood, caramel and fruit. Delightfully complex and surprisingly smooth. A great barelywine, Blue Point seems to have refined this brew a lot over the years. Definitely recommended.

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Photo of DavidSeanNJ
4.5/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


Poured into an 8 oz. glass...

Really beautiful looking barleywine. Dark copper/reddish hues. Massive cream colored head, nice lacing. Smells delightful- dried fruits, figs, and sugars. Taste was not overly sweet/cloying. Nice hop presence and well balanced with the malts. Candied sugars, prune...great flavors....excellent brew right here. I will seek this out again and pick some up to age.

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Photo of cosmicevan
4.5/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

stopped by the brewery to grab some swag and scope out old howling bastard on cask and was pretty surprised that I have no review on this one asi had it many times. brew showed up a deep amber brown with a thin creamy head. has a wonderful caramel nose and taste. the body is super creamy as I would expect on cask. cask really works for this beer. there is a subtle bitterness to the finish that is just right. one of my fav barleys and fav local beers on cask, gotta love it! what a treat!

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Photo of shapudding
4.46/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap and cask at Mugs in NY! (Schweet!) Very dark and clear amber rubied, but you can see through it. This bit of lovliness came to me served in an English pint, what a way to start out our pubhopping! Huge khaki creamy frothy head sitting over a half inch high. Smooth and silky, just glides over your tongue. Sweet and orangey, deeply malty, caramel sweetness, nice hoppiness. Not too strong heavy, or intense at all, one of my buds said it seemed like a triple IPA. Really enjoyed this one, was glad to have stumbled onto it after wondering about the $17 bottle I just passed over about a half hour before hitting this.

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Photo of ommegangpbr
4.43/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on-tap at the Ginger Man in NYC. It reminded me quite a lot of a chocolate stout. This is not something I would have expected after reading reviews about this from a bottle which just goes to show once again the differences that can exist between the tap and the bottle.
A pleasure to drink if you like that sort of thing. It was a lot like drinking a classy well crafted chocolate soda. Lots of textures going on. The 10% alcohol says hello for the first couple sips, then sneaks behind you and whacks you in the head from time to time. I could easily see being content after just having one of these and I can just as easily see wanting more.
I'll have to see just how much this differs from the bottle.
So far, one of my best barley wine experiences.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
4.35/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

"maddening howls fill the streets as further spreads the plague." - The Black Dahlia Murder

As clear, beautiful an auburn as I've ever seen. Creamy, crustacean white head lounges on top and wraps, thick, lacey arms around my glass. Simply beautiful.

Delicate yet effervescent aroma like freshly released fragrance from the first blossom of spring. Barleywine brings out the poet in me. Cherry wood, peach, tangerine, and honey drenched in nougat, caramel and sweetness.

Gran Marnier orange citrus, silky caramel and luxuriously warming alcohol. Mouthfeel so creamy it caresses my tongue like a harm of silk pillows.

Old Howling Bastard may be the result but Seductive Pirate Wench or Viking Thunder Goddess seem like more appropriate titles. I that some have aged this 2 years or more but at about the one year anniversary I find it to be just about perfect. I like my barleywine punchy though.

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Photo of BarleyBeatsGrapes
4.34/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First off, I like barley wines. I've had a few different brands and I overall like the style. Old Howling Bastard ("OHB") is an excellent representative of the style. I agree with other posters here that there are better barley wines out there but this is a great brand to use as the "standard" representative of the style. There will likely be better brands and there will likely be worst brands depending on your taste but the OHB is a great, balanced, everyday barley wine suitable for most palettes. An extremely enjoyable beer!

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Photo of jeonseh
4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A - Orange brown liquor color with a small head and light carbonation. Glows warmly

S - Orange, caramel malt, brown sugar, malt sweetness. Light lemon and alcohol as well

T - Caramel sweetness up front with brown sugar and dates. Orange hops and a lemon lemon from the hops, rock candy, and light alcohol near the back end as well as rowok the back end Really a great balance between sweetness of the caramel and dark fruit and the light bittering properties of the hops.

M - Medium body with decent carbonation and a thick syrupy body. Finish is light astringent

O - This was a rather impressive non-BA barleywine that has a great balance between sweet, malty flavors and the fresh hoppiness found in some barleywine. This is definitely one of the better hoppy barleywines that I've had.

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Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

so, I'm browsing the beer store and I find this blue point barleywine. Yup, I'm a fan of the style so this becomes my purchase. Upon checkout the cashier notes I got an 03 vintage barleywine and explains how this style gets better with age. He hasn't tried this yet but thinks about it often. I smiled, thanked him for his input and said I was looking forward to the bottle. No relevance at all to the tastes, just and amusing side not to the overall experience....

2003 vintage consumed Feb 2009. Blue wax top that took a little work to get through.

A - beautiful golden amber color with a nice off white head.
S - caramel, wheat, honey, abv.
T - candied oranges, caramel, citrus blossom honey and a touch of wheat.
M - full bodied, nicely carbonated, smooth, resinous and a nice light warming effect.
D - a sipper to be sure. a well aged bottle which I'm quite happy to have enjoyed!!!

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle, Vintage 2003 "Consume 2004 - Good / 2005 - Better / 2006 - Awesome"... it's 2007, so my guess is 'super awesome'?... well, it wasn't all that, but it was very good...

A - clear, amber color with a huge tan head that settled down to a thin layer, leaving lots of sticky lacing.

S - sweet malt & fig aroma, after it warms you can smell some alcohol.

T - sweet malty taste all the way through, abv is noticable after the beer warms.

M - excellent carbonation for a 4 year old brew, sweet, sticky, warming feeling.

D - good drinkability, sweetness and abv keep this at a '4'.

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Photo of RickS95
4.32/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

22 ounce bomber

Good looking for the style. Muddy brown and thick, looks like nasty river water after a good storm. The head is a dingy white, a finger thick at its best, and leaves a thin lace.

One of the best smelling barley wines, its full of malt with a ryeness to it. Also, there's a hit of citrus which isn't something I expected, but made for a nice surprise. Very floral with a splash of vanilla.

Very pleasant taste for a barley wine, English toffee comes to mind. Again, there's a vanillaish taste. Lots of malt as you'd guess. A caramelly finish. Hops are definitely there, but don't overwhelm.

It's smooth and buttery, and exceptionally smooth for the type. There's a hint of sweetness early on that turns to citrus before the bitterness takes over. Along the way, a buttery feel works in conjunction with the citrus and bitterness for a pleasant drinking experience. Full bodied, the high alcohol is well hidden, though you'll still want to sip it.

Overall it's a good beer, much better than their oatmeal stout I had last night. It's easy to drink and goes down smoothly.

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Photo of Duhast500
4.32/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a stemmed glass.

The color is a dark but clear amber color with a finger or two or foamy head.

The smell is a hard lemon and is a really strong NY brew. There are some brick walls of grainy fruit flavor that gives a you wallop.

The taste is a lot like the aroma, a mix of some really expressive flavor kicks hard. Sweet with a citrus flavor that has a bit of a tangy feel to it ever so slightly.

The feel of this beer is light, it has been waiting to jump onto my taste buds and pops a bit right at the end. A reall wonderful beer.

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Photo of MickeyCass
4.27/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice Barleywine. Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a snifter. Hazy reddish-brown with a nice finger of pale white head. Aroma about ad good as it gets. Fresh- baked bread with a hi t of sweetness and alcohol on the nose. Fairly similar in terms of taste. A little thick but deliciously good. Not THE best Barleywine style ale I've had, but pretty high on the list!

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Photo of sulldaddy
4.26/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Drinking a 2008 bottle at cellar temp. The bottle is wax sealed capped 750 ml.

I pour the beer into a stemless wine glass and get a rich chestnut colored beer with some ruby highlights and minimal beige head. There is a large sediment bar at the bottom of the bottle so I decant towards the end and leave the sediment behind.
The aroma is dark fruits and malt with toffee and brown sugar, I also get just a little booziness. No hiding that this is a big beer so far.

The first sip reveals a sticky thick body with minimal spacious carbonation. Coats my palate with each swallow and is a fairly heavy beer on the feel.
Flavor is what I got on the nose, with malt up front caramel, brown sugar, plums, raisins, general sweetness. This rolls to a slightly dry and bitter finish, which I attribute to the alcohol more than hops as I havent found them anywhere throughout this sampling.
This is a big robust beer yet somehow I finish my glass fairly quickly and am surprised when the bottle is gone.
I would buy this again and wonder how different it was fresh?

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Photo of aerozeppl
4.21/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On cask at Mahars

A: Just what you want a barleywine to look. Minimal slightly brownish white head. A nice deep caramel/toffee color.

S: A nice spiciness up front. Tons of malt. Some hint of booze in the back. Had a little bit of that smell all big cask beers have which I love.

T: Super malty with some nice spiciness. Hints of wood with the faintest hint of hops in the back.

M: Nice thick full bodied beer.

D: Had a pint of this over two glasses. Went down nicely. Really nice beer. I have been enjoying their cask offerings as of late.

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Photo of AaronRed
4.2/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I decided to try this very appealing ale- how could one not given its name? Nice copper hazy color with a white laced head. It had a nice aroma, sort of caramel and flowery bitterness. Not overpowering in smell or in taste- although it was quite tasty. A smooth but bitter kick at first and then it mellows out - a little cookie or biscut like. Very enjoyable and rich although not heavy. A perfect beer to sit by the fire after dinner. Alcohol is noticeable, but as it warms more of the ale- like flavors settle and the hoppiness relaxes as well. As with other BA's who reiewed this beer, my only knock it that it is very overpriced. I paid $16 for 750 ml.- not worth that much even if it is this good.

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Photo of cbl2
4.2/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

3/25/2007 $16.99 750 mL 10.00% Vintage 2003. Bottle says: Consume 2004 - Good, 2005 - Better, 2006 - Awesome. This magically appeared this week at Gary's Wine & Marketplace in Madison.


Pours a golden orange in hue with a thin film of tan head that is persistent.


Aromas consist of honey and flowers with a dash of tropical fruit and alcohol thrown in.


Smooth chewy mouthfeel accompany this sweet honey flavored ale. Touches of flowers are present, as is some hot alcohol on the finish. Finish is slightly hoppy, though the sweetness wins the day on this one.

A very respectable barley wine. Perhaps not worth the $16.99 I paid for it, but enjoyable nonetheless.

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Photo of BigMcLargeHuge
4.2/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks, as always, to the great MCLK. Thanks a ton Mark, I am so glad you moved down here. Bottle pours copper with light haze with gold hues and light tan head. The aroma has smooth dark to musty fruit notes and seem to bleed into a rye like spiciness, hops spiciness, full thick malty sweetness and a bit of heat at the end of the draw. The taste seems a bit organic and grassy moving into thick chewy malt sweetness, pine hop bitterness, a touch of pine hop flavor and grapefruit. It gets smooth and a bit grainy into the finish setting up a very pleasing finish. It leaves pine hops and fading yet faint sludgy sweet malts deep into the after taste.

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Photo of Boto
4.2/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

220z bomber: This one pours hazy, orangish-amber color. There was very little of a just slightly tan head on it. It left a little lacing. The aroma is nice. Definitely a lot of malts, but some fruit notes popping up, mainly apricots and orange. Some earthy notes also. The taste is also good. There is a dryness and very subdued sweetness to this one. Some caramel, toffee, plus faint plums and raisins. Alcohol is not evident in the flavor profile. I bought this for the name, but will buy it again for the taste.

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Photo of Klym
4.17/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter.

I actually randomly encountered this beer on BA when browsing through various beers. By the label alone I just wanted to give this beer a shot and even started trying to figure out an appropriate trade for it. I was excited when a couple of days later I went into a beer store during my visit in New York and saw a bottle of this! Despite, I'm sure, the overprice I had to pick it up and give it a try.

A: A translucent risin brown color with somewhat yellowish bubbles and sliding lacing. I'm guessing dark fruits are going to be all over this by the look.

S: Classic raisin/figgy smells with a little chocolate milk and dried strawberries. Sounds strange, I'm sure, but they blend well and it's actually a quite inviting smell.

T: Resin, raisin/figs, plum, milk (a sort of sharp almost curdled like dairy flavor, comes off nicely and adds a nice texture to the flavors). Great transitions between the different flavors, and the blend between the flavors is amazing. This is really well made, better than I expected.

M: Great medium bodied fullness with a smooth milky undertone that helps it glide around the mouth.

O: This beer is good! Honestly this is one of the best, most well balanced barley wines I've ever had with some interesting flavors mixed in. I think this beer needs more respect. I really enjoyed this and appreciated the combination of great brewery execution and bolder, more creative flavors.

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Photo of jt31914
4.17/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer was surprisingly good to me. It has a little bit of a light color, but the head and retention is nice. The lacing is beautiful for a Barleywine.

The smell is the best part. Nice Bready aroma that is a bit unusual for a barleywine but is very pleasant and enhances the beers flavor.

The taste is very nice and i was surprised by how delicious the beer was. it is not my favorite barleywine, but it is certainly an upper tier barleywine. A very nice bread character from the Vienna malt and a nice hop presence. The booze is not overwhelming and overall i find this to be a stellar barleywine.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap 2/15/09 at Track 84 in Warwick, RI, served in a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a light reddish brown color with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is very bready with caramel, brown sugar and a good amount of hops.

T: The taste is likewise quite bready up front with sweet flavors of caramel, brown sugar and fruit. A decently strong hops bitterness brings a good balance and there's a touch of smokiness in the background. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty goes down dangerously easy, not too filling, strong kick, good representation of style, it might not be the best barleywine that I've had, but it's a nice stronger beer that is good to sip on for a long time.

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Photo of killergreenbulli
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I Enjoyed this fine ale @ the Brazen Head cask ale festival 2/23/07

The old bastrd was served in an American pint glass. Quite cloudy,nut brown, with a mahogany hue, no head to speak of being from a cask.
I found the nose to be a bit tame, maybe I am used to the strong hop character of other American barley wines, A sweet malty aroma, with a nice hop finsh.
The first burst of flavor is a lovely malty, chewiness that is in your face. Than layers of, leather,tobaco, and cuurants.
Like all old bastards, this perticular one is thick. Great mouthfeel, smooth, velvety, slick.
All in all a nice barley wine that deserves some attention

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Photo of auxiliary
4.12/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

appearance - Nice amber color with a small white head.

smell -Sweet smells here, caramel and some hops.

taste - Sweet taste of caramek and ends with some bitterneess and a kick.

mouthfeel - Medium body.

drinkability - Nice sipper here. Enjoyed this beer. Has some kick at 10%.

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Blue Point Old Howling Bastard from Blue Point Brewing Company
3.82 out of 5 based on 300 ratings.
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