Barley Wine
Nils Oscar

Barley WineBarley Wine
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Style:
Barleywine - English
Ranked #232
ABV:
10.4%
Score:
85
Ranked #37,279
Avg:
3.71 | pDev: 12.67%
Reviews:
73
Ratings:
119
From:
Nils Oscar
 
Sweden
Avail:
Rotating/Seasonal
Wants
  5
Gots
  4
SCORE
85
Very Good
Barley WineBarley Wine
Notes: 20.3° Plato.

Also sold as "Swedish Barley Wine-Style Ale"
View: Beers
Reviews: 73 | Ratings: 119 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Steve555
Steve555 from Wales

3.82/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Body is dark brown with a purple tinge. Generous head that dissipates quickly. Sweet smell of sour fruit. Taste is fruity, cherries, blackberries and a generous helping of alcohol that is controlled by a strong malt base. Mouthfeel is slightly sickly. Overall I found this well balanced for a barley wine and although a sipper fairly drinkable, perhaps because I remember days of being dreadfully ill drinking Gold Label many years ago. This is far better.

Aug 14, 2020
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jkblr from Indiana

3.59/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

11.2oz undated bottle poured into a tulip glass at just above fridge temp 9.5% ABV. The beer pours barely hazy medium to dark amber with light khaki head. The head never really builds and forms a pencil thin ring around the glass. Minimal lacing. The aroma is mild with light caramel, raisin and wet cardboard. The taste is semisweet caramel again with some heavily oxidized notes and hints of raisin and plum. Minimal bitterness. The mouthfeel is medium plus bodied with less than medium carbonation and a mostly dry finish. Overall, good. I'm a little disappointed with this. I took a gamble on a room temperature bottle at an out of town shop. The bottle cap is not the oxygen absorbing type and the oxidation has moved past pleasant to muting the flavor of this bottle. It's labeled as Swedish Barley Wine-Style Ale.

Mar 13, 2020
Photo of GreesyFizeek
GreesyFizeek from New York

2.57/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

This one pours a muddy light brownish color, with a small head, and nl acing.

This smells like rotten fruit, grain alcohol, red wine, and cardboard.

This is just not good. I'm not sure of the vintage, but it's gotta be old, as it's just oxidized to the moon and back, with rotten wine flavors, and tons of cardboard. There's some light hop bitterness, and a very sweet malt backbone.

This is medium bodied, and syrupy, with basically no drinkability whatsoever.

This is quite the disappointment. Can't really recommend this at all.

May 13, 2019
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GuyFawkes from Illinois

3.5/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Unknown vintage; drank 10/23/16 @ the Yarchives.

See-through purple/red appearance.

A rough pour yielded a small, noisy khaki head which quickly dissipated; decent lace.

Caramel, apple cider, cherry & faint booze heat notes in the nose.

Medium thick, sticky mouthfeel.

Caramel, apple cider & baking soda flavors; mild booze heat emerged as this warmed.

Too sweet for this palate; I'm not sure how old this is but I can't say I'm dying to track down another.

Feb 14, 2019
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stakem from Pennsylvania

3.93/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

At the time of consumption, this is roughly 6 years old. 11oz bottle into a wine glass appears a beautiful copper color with white head that fades back to large bubs.

Aroma is caramel sweetness with light accenting fruity quality. Sugary with almost a currant character to it.

Taste is malt centric but without much residual sweetness. Lightly toasty breadiness with slight bitter fruit flavor, currants and neutral alcohol.

Light in body with light carbonation. A solid brew I would drink again.

Jan 12, 2017
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rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.31/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A lighter SRM than average for a barleywine, this one came in a more orange and yellow color than it did brown or auburn. Smallish 1/3" off white head. Aroma has some sweetness, maltiness to it more than anything else.

Taste was again sweet, but not adjunct sweet. Something yeast wise giving me a complex interplay of vanilla, wood and anise. Alcohol plenty pronounced. Interesting stuff, but not worth the price of admission. Caramel and dark fruit in the mouth feel.

Nov 10, 2016
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

4.46/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

a nearly perfect barleywine, maybe the best not barrel aged example of the style i have ever had. a tiny and ancient bottle, i think something like 2008, man does this age gracefully! really light in color, light amber, copper even, perfectly clear, strong airy head, great retention. the aroma knocks my socks off, grape jelly, right from the plaid smuckers jar, amazing, sweet and fruity both, minimal oxidation for its age, a slight woody sweetness (although this sees no wood), honey, very little alcohol presence too, likely a product of the time in the cellar. the flavor is incredible too, every bit as dynamic as the nose, with less of a grape complexion, although there are suggestions of red wine here, prune, and raisin. its lighter than many in terms of the flavor it seems to get from the malt, the layers come from the yeast it seems like, something high gravity, mature, and foreign to me. caramel and fig, brown sugar and flower honey, smooth maple and new paper. i love the depth of flavor this has, how light and airy the feel is for what it is, not too much body, hardly any residual sugar, and just a trace of warming alcohol in the very late stages. this is wonderfully delicious beer, probably as good a barleywine as i have ever had. need to try this fresh to see what difference the age makes, but i suspect it is substantial. this is the new gold standard in the style for me, unforgettable! appallingly underrated here on BA...

Sep 11, 2016
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BethanyB from New York

4.28/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Slightly hazy, and medium brown. Creamy beige head has moderate retention.

Smell: A complex bouquet for sure! Layers of toasty and roasty malt, cinnamon raisin bread, dates, toffee, and plums.

Taste: Could be the most complex flavor profile I've witnessed to date, yet it still manages to be balanced. All the flavors from the aroma are present, in addition to chocolate, vanilla, coffee, nuts, and honeysuckle. A gentle bitterness keeps the scale from tipping too far down the rabbit hole.

Mouthfeel: Velvety, smooth, and caressing, with medium carbonation. Very little alcohol warming for the style.

Overall: A simply scrumptious beer, and a new favorite for me! The complexity is almost mind-blowing...how can so many flavors be crammed into one 12 oz. bottle? A carefully crafted complicated recipe must be behind this jewel from Sweden.

Sep 07, 2013
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coltsr2 from England

3.87/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a nice copper brown...little head that dissipates almost right away...slight lacing ...

Aroma...typical barley wine..all fruity malt..no hops...this particular beer is quite subtle on the nose...

Taste is nice, a little too sweet for the 10.4% abv imo, very slight almost no bitterness, malty fruitcake with lots of sweet luscious raisins and dates ....a simple honest low carbonated barley wine and overall a very nice and pleasant, smooth experience...very drinkable!

Apr 26, 2013
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Odysseyalien from New Jersey

3.01/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottle. Age unknown but it looks like the one in the picture at this site. No head when poured. Thin lacing...almost cirrus cloud-like formations as it’s sipped away. Golden in color in my snifter...a few bits of light sediment accumulating at the bottom of the glass. The taste comes on in fine British barley wine style -- malts up front...raisins...pepper...light hops...yum. Unfortunately, it’s a bit too thin on the palate for my taste. Almost like sipping water on the backend. Too bad cause this might otherwise have been one of the best British barley wines out there for the price. The "thiness" of the backend killed it for me. Not sure if I’ll buy this one again.

Jan 07, 2013
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TMoney2591 from Illinois

3.38/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Walter Payton shaker pint glass.

Gotta love the classiness on display with these labels, man. Within, the beer pours a clear copper-bronze topped by a finger of off-white foam. The nose comprises biscuit, mild booze, light walnut, and a twinge of cardboard. I'd check the freshness of this thing, but, alas, not a hint of an intimation of information to be found. Well, onwards, as many such beers are purposefully oxidized, sherry-style, so who knows? The taste actually brings forth some sherry-like notes, all backed by some biscuit, toffee, and toasted wheat. It's an odd combination when scrutinized (and whilst looking at the bottle of Lustau sherry sitting on the shelf across the room), but it kinda works. Go figure. I have no idea if it was meant to taste like this, but I'm not gonna overthink this any further. The body is a limber medium, with a very light moderate carbonation and a slightly slick feel. Overall, something tells me this is a bit long in the tooth, but it still works (just likely in a different direction than intended).

Oct 11, 2012
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Mora2000 from Texas

3.58/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours an orange-amber color with a white head. The aroma has a ton of sugar and bready malt in it. The flavor is also very sweet. I get a lot of brown sugar and molasses, as well as some pine and grass from the hops. There is also a lot of caramel and biscuit malt in the flavor. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Jul 07, 2012
Photo of Jwale73
Jwale73 from Rhode Island

3.8/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Dave Guay for sharing this one. Pours a dull, orange-gold (almost burnt orange) with a semi-hazy clarity and a loose head that quickly dissipates into a soapy skim. Nose reveals a toffee presence and buttery notes, but aromas are somewhat subdued. Taste expresses toffee, light toasted malts, a light hops bittering and a slightly earthy finish. Mouthfeel is medium-light in body with a pleasant, even carbonation. Overall, an immensely drinkable barleywine considering its 9.5% abv. A somewhat underrated brew in my opinion.

Jul 01, 2012
Photo of Greywulfken
Greywulfken from New York

3.73/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: mahogany beer with tan head that settled out quickly; big bubbles percolated up through beer

S: overripe fruit: dark and sweet

T: fruits again featured - a very fruit-sweet beer, with a noticeable backbone of alcohol

M: somewhat viscous without feeling too syrupy; had an unexpected "chalky" feel

O: not a bad beer, but I tend to look for something a little more complex in a barleywine, whereas this was pretty straightforward on the fruits. I also tend to look for a little crispness or zing - this was a very mellow beer - which you may like, but for me it fell into that kind of average range

Mar 21, 2012
Photo of Mebuzzard
Mebuzzard from Colorado

3.98/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A solid barley wine. Very sweet. Dominant caramel and heavy sweet bread.

Nice looking gold hazy beer. Semi sticky lacing.

Strong aroma, very sweet. Thick caramel and syrup. Not much to review here. It's a solid beer, but very sweet. Can use some time to mature, if it ever does. This is an early 2011 release.

Dessert beer for sure

Mar 17, 2012
Photo of rsdaugherty
rsdaugherty from Colorado

3.53/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle into pint glass
A – Half a finger light tan head to a crown on a hazy/sediment brown amber with maroon tones and golden edges. I really like the color 4
S – Caramel malts, dark fruit, cherries or currants, slight spice, oak 3.5
T – Unique. Earthy and peppery with nuts, slight fruits, subtle overall almost too much so for such a high ABV barleywine. Slight alcohol on the finish. 3.5
M – Medium body is smooth and a bit boozy, small bubble carbonation, not as big as most barleywines I’ve had 3.5
O – Was hoping my Swedish ancestors would teach me something about Barleywine, oh well… decent but not exciting. Would not advise a fellow BA to seek this out. 3.5

Sep 02, 2011
Photo of cobrarax
cobrarax from Sweden

3.97/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

M. Liquid is amber and slightly hazy. The foam is white, small and leaves no lacing. Some curtains.

S: Some tobacco, dried fruit and sandalwood. Syrup, cognac and cocoa. Nice and elegant.

T: Some julmust, cocoa and sherry in the beginning. Then molasses, coffee and noble hops. Toffee, grapes and alcohol.

M: Quite much carbonation. The liquid is rather thin as well. Alcohol is well hidden.

O: A decent beer. Nothing outstanding, though.

Aug 23, 2011
Photo of rvdoorn
rvdoorn from Netherlands

4.15/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Look: the beer pours an golden-copper color with a small white head.
Smell: Dried fruits, apricots, raisins, orange, and sweet malts.
Taste: Raisins, malts, candy sugar. The aftertaste is sweet, dry and long.
Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body, medium carbonation.
Overall: A decent barley wine, a bit thin in the body for the style.

Jul 21, 2011
Photo of rarbring
rarbring from Sweden

3.31/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A clear orange copper toned beer, a small off-white head with good curtains.

The smell is quite boozy, glue/solutions with orange marmalade.

The taste is sherry, orange, alcohol, and a bitter rye feeling.

Little carbonation, soft texture, a medium body, a slightly coarse dryness.

A bit thin, the alcohol presence implies that some storing is needed. This was the early 2011 batch.

Jul 17, 2011
Photo of ksmi116
ksmi116 from Louisiana

2.93/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A - Poured into a goblet, it is a hazy orange with little to no head from a typical pour.

S- Almost sickeningly sweet. Dark fruits, heavy malt, and a bit of sweet orange.

T - Sooo malty initially. Crazy. Very sweet, and eventually you can taste the darker fruits. As it warmer the sweetness mellowed out a bit

M - Syrupy and you can feel the carbonation, despite not being able to see it.

O - Not a fan, but I feel that some of that is the style.

Mar 21, 2011
Photo of xodin
xodin from Louisiana

4.36/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a somewhat cloudy red mahogany, with minimal head. Ample aroma of fruits, caramel malts, some spice, and alcohol. Smooth, sweet taste, chewy with caramel (which is a quality I highly admire), like silk throughout the swallow, and a warming, slightly alcoholic aftertaste. Low on carbonation and bitterness, which is typical of the style, plenty of sweetness and delicious caramel, though perhaps a bit low on ester complexity--may benefit to age. Fruity aroma not so apparent in the mouth either. No date listed on bottle, but I'm guessing would only improve with some extra time in the cellar. Great winter brew, and a must for barleywine and strong ale lovers alike.

Feb 24, 2011
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ForWhatAlesYou from Minnesota

2.83/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

11.2 oz bottle into a snifter

A: Doesn't pour much of a head, just a bunch of loose bubbles. Cloudy amber with red tones and sediment evident.

S: Aromas of cooked vegetation, alcohol, sweet malt, and caramel.

T: A little rough around the edges. Deeply roasted grains and burnt vegetables. Alcohol is dominant. Any sweetness is immediately countered by huge amount of umami.

M: Chewy, syrupy. Carbonation is nice vehicle. Dry on the finish.

D: I really like barley wines but this one is not the best. For the $6.99 I paid for this one bottle, I could've found a few much better beers to try.

Feb 21, 2011
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SkeeterHawk from Texas

3.45/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I picked this beer up at Knightly spirits in Orlando and it rode back with me on my motorcycle back to Texas. I thought that it was interesting that they do all of the ingredients on site. Lets give this one a try:

Appearance: Pours a really clear light orangish golden color with no head even after an aggressive pour. There was some sediment on the bottom that I managed to keep out of the glass. When swirling, the beer looks thick.

Aroma: The beer is really cold right now, but I am getting a REALLY reserved aroma for the style. I am getting a little bit of caramel malts and some alcoholic spice, but that about defines it when the beer is cold.

Taste: The beer is dominated by the sweetness with some toasty notes and a little bit of caramel to define that sweetness. There is some hops in here, but they are providing more balance than anything they are adding to the flavor. The beer is medium bodied with very low carbonation even for this style. There is alcohol present in the flavor and the finish, and it is rather noticeable in such a light colored/flavored barley wine. The finish is ever so slightly balanced toward the bittering, but it is very mild. The sweet malt is a big player in the finish up until the end when there is a subtle dryness from the hops that comes and and settles down for the long haul.

Opinion: Well, I am not quite sure what to say about this one. It is a pretty good beer overall. There are no fermentation or process flaws. The overall presentation is rather light for this style, but I am sure that it fits in somehow. It is just that it is so reserved it comes across like a "session barley wine", if there was such a thing. I am not one for the huge, and over-the-top Barley wines that screw up your palate for two days...but I like one to be more assertive than this one was in my glass. It is nice to try considering that they do everything at the brewery, but I'd try it more for novelty than for flavor.

Feb 17, 2011
Photo of EgadBananas
EgadBananas from Louisiana

4.14/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Pours a muddy orange/yellow color, with about a finger of light tan head. Dissipates to lots of bigger bubbles and leaves a bit of weaving down the side.

Aroma is fairly fruity, dark fruits, malty sweetness and a hint of booze.

Lot's of dark fruits in the taste, malty sweetness and a surprising, albeit, tasty, bit of chocolate in there somehow. Hints of citrus are mixed in there too...

Feel is creamy and slick, but it's too thin to be "rich".

Good abv, and well hidden, good taste, and despite the thin feel, very easy drinking.

Feb 11, 2011
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3rdRowTailgater from Louisiana

4.06/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 11.2 oz bottle into a snifter. Pours a hazy pinkish, orange color thick with noticeable sediment. Not a very big head and does not leave much lacing.

Has a great barleywine aroma, with loads of maltiness, fruit, vanilla and maple. Really nice aroma.

Taste is pretty nice with loads of sweetness that eventually give way to a hint of bitterness. You taste everything that I mentioned in the aroma along with a little bread taste. Really a nice tasting barleywine.

Its got a nice thick mouthfeel that coats the mouth well. Overall it's a really decent beer with my only gripe is that its appearance isn't all that impressive.

Jan 24, 2011
Barley Wine from Nils Oscar
Beer rating: 85 out of 100 with 119 ratings