Rudyard's Rare Barley Wine | Hale's Ales Brewery & Pub

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Rudyard's Rare Barley WineRudyard's Rare Barley Wine

Brewed by:
Hale's Ales Brewery & Pub
Washington, United States

Style: English Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-09-2002

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Reviews: 72 | Ratings: 102
Photo of Braz
3.94/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bought from BevMo. Pours a ruddy murky red brown color. Little white head dissipates quickly leaving almost no trace. Aromas of dark fruit, plums and raisins. Taste is rather sweet and heavy. A little fruity with some boozy undertones. Very warming and a nice sipper. Lightly carbonated for a nice mouthfeel.

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Photo of kemoarps
3.99/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 edition

Super hazy super opaque. Medium brown, like a really thick homemade apple cider. Minimal head.

Smells good. some malty sweet, caramel. A little grassy hops somewhere in there, but not rull strong.

Follows suit. There's even some dark prune/plum fruit in there somewhere too. Spicy grassy notes, some alcohol, but not a whole lot. malts, but not as sweet as it smells.

I don't know if it is as good fresh, but at a year plus, it is quite delicious.

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Photo of Kevin73
3.72/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Pours brownish amber with almost no head poured vigorously from a bottle. The nose is nice with notes of lavender, banana, other fruits, leather, caramel, and hops. The hops flavor is very strong and overpowers many of the more subtle sweet notes masking the alcohol. Medium bodied, mouthfeel is average. Not a bad barleywine but it lacks balance.

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Photo of sukwonee
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 vintage consumed on 10/9/2012

before I begin - while this is not a bad beer by any means, this did not taste like a barleywine. I definitely wouldn't call this an IPA, but it was one of those cross-breeds.

A: Nothing special here. Brown with thin head, some lacing. There is a bit of red tint.

S: Hops, caramel, some exotic fruits (I want to say blood orange, grapefruit, and dried cherries or prune).

T: It starts off with blood orange, quickly followed by caramel malt, sugar, booziness, then dark fruits, finishes off with hop bitterness. It's quite sweet, hoppy, malty, and boozy. Big beer for sure. This sort of reminded me of Short's blood orange wheatwine.

M: Thick, syrupy, but caronation is there. Slightly hot from alcohol.

O: It's the best Hale's beer I have had, but to be honest, I am not a huge fan of Hale's. This one was alright and it felt like it could benefit from further aging.

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Photo of corby112
3.71/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 vintage.

Pours a dark chestnut brown color that's completely opaque with a one finger, light beige head that slowly settles into a thick, lasting ring. Streaks of soapy lacing left behind. Surprising considering the style and ABV.

Earthy, leathery malt aroma with spicy hops, sweet alcohol and subtle dark fruit notes. Surprising hop presence with some grass and resinous pine followed by alcohol, leathery malt, caramel, toffee, plum and fig.

On the fuller end of medium bodied with a spicy hop bite that lingers over the earthy, leathery malt and sweet booze into a hot, bone dry finish. Again, it's surprisingly hop forward with lots of dry, earthy bitterness and resinous pine flavor dominating until the malts and booze come in on the back end. The leathery malts compliments the earthy hops but it could use a bit more sweetness. There's some caramel and toffee but the vinous dark fruit notes found in the nose are barely noticeable. Some boozy heat in the finish that provides some nice warmth, but overall the high ABV is decently masked. Not very complex but still a flavorful sipper.

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Photo of justiceavocado
4.8/5  rDev +24%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

From a bottle at Concordia in Portland. After a really, too big meal.

A -- just fine. Better than average lacing, eggshell white head, really really dark brown-red, as close to opaque as you can get.

S-- smaller than you'd think for its big big flavor. Mostly a smoky caramel smell, a kind of funky fruit maybe too, like old prunes and walnuts.

T -- whammo. Huge hop nose, the piney, leafy kind, immediately followed by funky fruit -- dates, prunes, dried apricots, all overripe; these are good flavors, sweet and bitter in the hops, sweet and bitter in the yeast, understated but powerful malts... Yes, Hale's Ales Ltd., yes.

M -- feels anti climactic to talk about this now, but the fermentation obviously didn't over-carbonate this bad boy. Suede, yo.

O -- this is what we mean when we say barley wine. Pay attention, other barley winers.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the brewery in Seattle.

Pours a deep amber, slightly hazed colour, with a very solid body that holds lots of static, fine-bubbled carbonation. Head is a firm, full crown of yellowish off-white that leaves some streaky lacing. Good looking brew.

Nose is rich with chewy, sticky caramel, shot through with singular hops that give a bright contrast. Aromas of musk come through as well giving a nice twist. Good stuff.

Caramel entry, big and chewy, which is soon joined by some light citric lemon characters and a dash of pepper. There's a touch of mild astringency on the finish, along with a boozy note on the back (the only hint of its rather heavy weight yet). There's a slight build up of bitterness after a while, but it creeps up, and isn't immediately noticeable after your first couple of sips.

Feel is chick and chewy, as you'd expect.

This ticks the boxes for a barleywine. Does it go beyond this? Not much beyond, but even getting a beer this big to feel so coherent and tasty is a good achievement.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.59/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from 7/2010 notes. Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours a dark, dark maroon amber with a hint of a head and no lacing. Intense barley wine aroma. Heavy with dark fruits, figs, dates, dark malts, molasses. Nice rich flavor, but a bit too bitter; very astringent, medicinal bitterness in the finish spoils the experience. I have a few aging and will review again later.

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Photo of ChadQuest
2.8/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The color of the body is a dark cola color.
The nose is saying toffee, over caramelized sugars half burnt.
Flavors are brown sugar on rye bread, toffee, grapefruit hop note that doesn't mesh very well, will probably be a good deal better once the hops integrate more i think. Fruits like Figs and Dates and Prunes.
Feel is slightly sticky, medium body.

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Photo of ktrillionaire
4.47/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2003 bottle, much thanks to the ever-generous beerzebub. The brew pours with an appearance like day-old cola; syrupy, and near flat, with a smattering of soapy bubbles throughout. The beer has definitely kept well; it has qualities of a fine port or sherry at this point. Deep vinous character, tannic and oaky qualities, and a robust earthiness are evident upon the palate. A very enjoyable sipper, indeed.

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Photo of Reidrover
4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle from "Lifesource".Salem. $2.95 LOvelly beer to look at.. hazy( morelike pea-souper) dark brown ale..with a gorgeous rocky,thick,creamy light tan in love with the looks. Great malty aromas..caramel,treacle,fresh whole wheat bread. Thisk malty brew to drink..sour malt, unusual and throws many off..but its the same kinda sour if you ever had Monkman’s Slaughter..i like!! Great smooth/thick mouthfeel. I definatlly like this aquired taste, but delicious stuff.

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Photo of harrymel
4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch 2011 (January) Consumed 11AUG11

A: pours a toasted brown ale with three fingers of light graham head. This falls slowly to a quilt of the same. Cobweb lacing above rosy hues in this brilliantly clarified ale. Great look.

S: toffee, caramel, burnt sugar, thick and sweet malts. Man, I love the way this smells. A hint of bitterness.

T: Sweet toffee with metallic hints. Burnt caramel, nutty malt, earthy yeast. Slightest hint of bitterness and floral hops.

M: Medium to heavy body with moderate on hi carb. semi dry finish.

O: Man, this beer is going to age sooo well. I've had this beer at the two year mark, and remains one of my best beer memories. Can't wait for my stash to age appropriately. My hidden gem.

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Photo of sisuspeed
2.72/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to Andre for the bottle!
2010 Vintage, 9.2% ABV

Poured into a Cigar City snifter. A clear, burnt-amber body holds up over a finger's worth of creamy, off-white head. Large waves of lacing trace the glass.

Sweet malts with a touch of fruitiness. Not overly strong and a bit muddled. Touch of burnt caramel and faded hop. Some booze as well. Not overly pleasant.

Like the nose, the taste is mostly sweet malts with the addition of slightly astringent fruits and woody hops on the finish. Awkward and muddled. This needs some work.

Mouthfeel is smooth up front, almost creamy and then finishes with some bitter hops and alcohol warmth. Probably the best part of the beer besides the appearance. Low carbonation, as it should be.

Overall, this is not a bad beer, but definitely not good. Fairly lacking for the style. Both the nose and the flavor are a bit of a mess and not overly enjoyable. I wouldn't recommend this one. Good for a tick, but there are much more enjoyable barleywines out there.

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Photo of abuliarose
3.66/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter, revealing smoky deep rouge-brown body under two fingers of cream-colored head. Some lacing. Smells like candy apple and mealy malts. Decent smells.

Tastes sweet and still very hoppy with a rich buttery grapefruit rind bitterness over toasted hazelnut and caramel malt. Mouthfeel is smooth and silky, slightly syrup-like, with a tiny-nucleating, tongue coating carbonation that adds a little lightness to the medium-heavy body. Drinkability is decent for a 9.2% beer.

Overall it could use some aging to mellow out to my favorite kinds of English barleywines, but it tastes like it has a lot of potential.

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Photo of UMNbeerhunter
4.17/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured on 3/5/11 into a Town Hall stemware glass.

Pours a very dark amber with 1 finger of head that is off white. Head dissipates after several minutes and leaves little to medium lacing.

Smells of roasted malts and lots of fruit.

Taste is malt, fruit and for the first time I think I can actually taste a tobacco taste... Wow. Should I start smoking since I like this??? Anyway, tastes good. Missing a little more fruity to balance the tobacco/date flavor but it has a good taste.

Mouthfeel is medium to heavy with almost no bite but a little booziness on the back end. Resin leaves the fruit and tobacco taste lingering in the mouth. Nice feel.

Drinkability is good. I like this Barley Wine and let me tell you why. Most barley wines I have tried need at least 2 years to rid it of the huge phenol booziness. This one however is good to go just shortly it was bottled and I like that aspect of it. I will have to try this one after it has 2 or 3 years on it.

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Photo of brewandbbq
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, vintage 2007.

Pours dark mahogany with a thin, tan head and some serious chunkage before I could stop the pour. A placid surface with zero lacing and settling chunks remained for the duration of the glass.

Aromatics lead off with winey booze, figs, prunes, leather, sweet malt, and black cherries. Hints of tobacco, raisins, toffee, and wet paper follow through.

Medium bodied with a fairly flat mouthfeel. A bit thin and dead. Tacky and sticky.

Sweet malt, warming booze, dried cherries, and toffee start the palate. Wet leather rubbed with tobbaco and figs step forward.

Finishes with lingering heat, cardboard, toffee, and stale raisins.

Well, this one's over the hill. Pretty faded, oxidized and flatish. Lacking any hops or robustness. Some Barleywines hold up, and some don't. I'd like to try a freshie someday though.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.58/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

"Of all the liars in the world, sometimes the worst are your own fears."

--Rudyard Kipling

December 2007. Murky mahogany with no highlights and an extremely thin slice of beige colored cream that fades within the first minute. A thin line of foam is seen where beer meets glass meets air. Here's hoping there are enough bubbles in this brew.

The nose is incredibly blunted. Warming has to bring out some sort of aroma, doesn't it? Note: it does. A whiff of medium-dark fruit is about it. Taste bud submersion better be a different story.

On the flavor front at least, Hale's Rudyard's Rare has held up pretty well in the almost three years since the release. It's clearly an aged version at this point, with everything that that entails. I've had more than a few English barleywines and old ales over the years that tasted (and felt) pretty similar.

Alcohol, while not completely masked, is nearly so. Otherwise, we have steely caramel, dates and figs macerated in port wine, hints of dark chocolate and a tea leaf bitterness that can't be due to hops at this late date. It all comes together pretty well if you're into sipping and savoring...

... and don't need even a hint of creamy chewiness with respect to mouthfeel. Yes, the body/mouthfeel has broken down quite a bit, but it's still somewhat enjoyable. Besides, the bubbles are right there, just below the surface, adding more than was expected.

It's too bad that I didn't crack the crown on Rudyard's Rare Barleywine Style Ale prior to today. It was probably better beer in 2008-2009 than 2010. It's still worth a purchase if you see a bottle and if you like fruity, vinous, thin-bodied English barleywines.

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Photo of compass40204
4.31/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Warm, coppery color. Off white head that lingers for a while. Malt dominates the aroma. Smells slightly sweet, with scarcely any hop in the nose. Tastes of slight alcohol (wouldn't have guessed it was 10%) and some toffee. Flavor lingers. Mmmm... barleywine. Profuse lacing all the way down. Hops are barely evident in the taste of this, being pushed aside by the slight alcohol heat. English barleywines shouldn't be hop-heavy, anyway, and this is super balanced. Nice mouthfeel, not syrupy or thick like some bw's, but has a full body you'd expect in a beer this big. The warming effect from this one's abv creeps up a bit slowly and builds as you drink. This is my kind of beer.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
2.49/5  rDev -35.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Just purchased a couple months ago, this December 2007 vintage. 12 oz bottle pours a hazed and sedimentated dark brown color. Absolutely no foam here and darker than most BWs I have had.

Nose is interesting...heavy red grape and raisin fruit, almost to the point of tartness. Burnt caramel sweetness, solventy alcohol. Pine-Sol maybe?

Malts and raisins are very dark and fruity, bitterness like chewing on pine needles. Very odd that the hops have seemed to hold on in this beer while nothing else was able to. While not a drain pour, it will be tough to finish my half of the bottle. Perhaps this beer just does not age well, but there are not too many barleywines that cant hold on for at least two and a half years.

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Photo of colts9016
2.29/5  rDev -40.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

Poured into a pint glass at 45 degrees.

Appearance: There is no head to speak of, I forced the poured and still ended up with nothing. The color of the beer is a medium to a dark brown color. There is some effervescence visible on the side of the glass.

Nose: A medium dark roasted malt, with some fruity characters, floral, toffee, caramel, and some phenols. The fruity characters are dried cherries, and raisins. There are some bready and yeasty notes.

Taste: The flavors is roasted malt, dried cherries, caramel, burnt character, phenols, solvents, yeast, bready, and some caramel.

Mouth feel: There is some carbonation and some stickiness.

Overall: This beer is a drain pour. It has a terrible stickiness and just linger on the tongue too long. I didn't like this beer.

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Photo of DanOLeary
3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aroma: Initial hint of an expected dark fruit but this gives way very quickly to aroma's of sweet cherry and candy sugar. I was a bit surprised, though pleasantly, to find a floral hop aroma which is quite prevalent. Alcohol notes are light but come off as peppery and clean, not fusel.

Appearance: Pours a deep ruby to mahogany red, nearing brown but the clarity is so good that it allows enough light through the edges to produce a lens flare effect of dark cherry red. No head. There is but a trace of creamy tan bubbles outlining the edge of the glass.

Flavor: The sweet candy sugar comes into play immediately on the tongue. It lingers for a moment then you're hit with citrus hop bitterness that nearly puckers the tongue. This is clearly a heavily hopped ale, but the malt backs up strong bitterness with dark fruits, raisin and some molasses. Alcohol spice comes in near the finish, though not overly hot by any means. There is an almost oaked presence in the malt but it's more astringent than what you'd expect from an oak aged beer. Finish is clean and biting with the hop bitterness lingering through the end.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with medium carbonation. The hop bitterness has a drying effect, bordering on astringent but it just pushes to the edge without going over. Alcohol spice doesn't become overly prevalent until near the end where it stings and warms the throat.

Overall: A barley wine worth seeking out because it balances considerable hop bitterness on top of a rich blend of malt character with a well rounded alcohol presence. As a personal opinion I would enjoy a little more grainy texture to the body but I'm being picky. The hop bitterness is very high, and unlike some barley wines it's not over the top on bitterness while lacking depth in body and other malt flavor characteristics.

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Photo of olympuszymurgus
2.89/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

2007 bottle at the brewery. our first stop on a brewery tour, it had to be done. wait a minute, this is a coke! no, it smells like a beer, kind've. super thin, totally flat, little caramel, alcohol, the disappointment of seeing your mother eating the cookies you left for santa. i just can't get over how uninteresting this beer is. to make it more interesting, i drank the little left from the bottle with a straw. this did not help enhance the flavor, but it was more entertaining. i've had this beverage before and not been impressed but i don't remember it being quite like this. i have a feeling this may be one for having fresh on tap.
anyways, props to these guys for open fermentation, and i hope to try some of that barrel aged quad in a year or so.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.57/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle dated December 2006 into a goblet. No carbonation and nearly no head, what little head there is disappears into nothing. Beer is dark brown and hazy, can't see through it at all.

Beer smells like raisins and malt. No detectable alcohol, smells better than it looks.

Beer is still, completely flat. There is a roastiness to the flavor that is not unpleasant. The beer is more dry and less sweet than the initial aroma made me think. Second taste, the alcohol is much more obvious in this second taste, very forward and strong. Its not bad, at least its some sweetness. Overall, its drinkable, its fine, not the best barleywine I've had but its pretty good.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.8/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass. This is the December 2007 vintage and clocks in at 9.2% ABV according to the bottle.

Appearance: extremely dark brown, nearly black; just little edges of brown when held up to the light. No head at all.

Smell: sweet fruit aromas, principally raisin, but also pears and cherries. Quite nice.

Taste: sweet malt, raisins, pears, cherries, fresh tobacco and an alcohol bite. Not dynamic, but nicely complex. This is pretty good.

Mouthfeel: medium-thick body; it coats the mouth like a syrup. Carbonation is extremely low. While in most cases this texture is not my cup of tea, it is quite appropriate for the style and I think it suits the flavor profile and general experience quite well.

Drinkability: the flavor is pretty strong and the alcohol not particularly well-masked; while this is tasty, it's definitely not a beer of which I need more than one.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.32/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

December 2003 9.2% vintage received as an extra in a trade with pranaferox. Thanks! Consumed on 10/8/2009 in a snifter. A hard pour yields a fizzy one finger light brown head atop a dark reddish brown liquid.

The nose is initially booze soaked dates with lesser notes of figs. Sugary caramel is prominent, as well as some toffee. I also detect dried prunes and figs. The aroma is very rich with a slight nuttiness. This has a great aroma.

The taste is of dried dates, figs, and prunes. It's sugary sweet caramel with a high moderate level of booze and some nuttiness. The finish is sweet and sugary with lingering date notes. Hop bitterness is low.

The beer is full bodied with a high level of low carbonation and a chewy mouthfeel. A very nice English Barleywine that has held up wonderfully.

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Rudyard's Rare Barley Wine from Hale's Ales Brewery & Pub
3.87 out of 5 based on 102 ratings.
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