100 Barrel Series #04 - Barleywine | Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

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100 Barrel Series #04 - Barleywine100 Barrel Series #04 - Barleywine
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80 Ratings
100 Barrel Series #04 - Barleywine100 Barrel Series #04 - Barleywine

Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by taez555 on 12-28-2003

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 80 |  Reviews: 73
Reviews by travolta:
Photo of travolta
3.84/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pint & 6oz.

Apperance: Very clear, strawberry copper. Nice lacing, minimal head retention.

Nose: pear, apples, a little bit of berries, some alcohol. Smells sweet.

Taste: Right in the middle I get alcohol. It's almost perfectly timed, try it. A lot of fruit. Some hops at the end, I don't know what kind, I guess the bitter type. The end is a litle syrupy.

Notes: The label says, "Barleywine style ale". That freaks me out. What the hell is a "Style" of beer. Does that mean it's something else?

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Todd
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm going off of memory from the other night and past tastings, and will revise when I get my bottle sample. Sampled this one, several times, at Anam Cara.

Harpoon's Barleywine is simply a very decent Barely Wine; gorgeously bright (clear / amber) in appearance with a creamy white head, wonderful floral / malty nose, layers of malt depth on the palate from tropical fruits to caramel. A bit hoppy with ~ 80 IBUs of hop bitterness, but not insanely unbalanced like west coast versions, it complements and brings much balance to this powerful, clean and limited edition brew. Also worth a mention ... unlike other 100 Barrel Series beers, this one is distinctly a "Harpoon beer" ... I'm guessing they're using one of their house yeast strains.

Strong. Drinkable. Complex. Balanced. Hell yeah!

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Photo of Billolick
4.25/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

bomber bottle with freshness dating. Pours clear golden amber. Minimal tiny bubble head and leaves nice lacing. Sweat malty nose. Nice malt profile. Sweatness not too much. Suble grainy hoppyness. Grapefruit and also a nice yeastyness round this one out. High quality sipper. Buy this stuff up if you can find it.

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Photo of warriorsoul
4.42/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

First had this beer at the Harpoon Brewery in Boston at one of their "FOH" tastings...they rule!
I was fortunate enough to p/u a case and finally take time to share my experience....
Pours a brilliant bronze w/ very little head...but clings to the glass...nice lace.
Sweet malty aroma w/ raisins and vanilla. Also hints of caramel and butter....so much to offer the nose.
Taste of cherries and oranges w/ just a hint of alcohol. The mouthfeel is slick and syrupy...not dry at all. It has become much more complete of a beer sitting in my cellar for a year plus....will still have a few waiting for me next year.
I will enjoy this 22oz. over the next hour or so....savor the flavor!
No need to have more than one of these in a night...but it can be done...just don't plan on getting much accomplished.
Great job Harpoon! Hope to see you produce this style again very soon.

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Photo of SkinnyElvis
3.7/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Purchased at Bauer's in Boston. Pours with a very thin head and fairly clear right from my cellar at a temp of 48 degrees. Bit of a boozy/malt smell. The alcohol is noticable in the taste but not overwhelming. Fairly sweet for a barleywine which is not my preference. It does have a bit of an alcohol burn going down. I got a six pack so I think I will lay a few bottles down to see if this mellows.


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Photo of jcdiflorio
3.96/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served into a stemmed SOHM 0.4 l snifter glass from a long neck brown crowned bottle with brewers name,ABV,OG,IBU's,04 by100 bottles? all on front of label. This beer was sent by beer buddy Sudsdog.

Aroma,WOW, very complex and interesting. Intense hop aromas,very citrusy,spicy,woody,piney,nice and earthy.Sweet alcoholic maltiness,very fruity hints of fresh apples,a great aroma could smell this one all night.

Intense hop flavors very citrusy,resiny,piney,a bit grapefruity.Thick sweet carmell tastes with hints of chocolate,a very nicely balanced beer.Good hot alcohol flavors. Finishes with a bittersweet,citrus rind,and lots of stickyness, sweetness and alcohol tastes.

A very full beer,thick and cloying,couldn't drink a lot of these,but not because of the taste,nothing wrong with that. I can't belive I just drank a Harpoon that tastes this good,usually just a mediocre beer,but not this one. Sudsdog was right about this beer it's a good one. I need to try more barleywine after this one, Thanks for this one, Sudsdog !!!

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Photo of far333
3.64/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pale honey colored with a white wispy head that sinks very quickly, leaving spots of lace around the glass. Aroma is big and sweet, smells like sweet pear and cinammon. Mouthfeel is thick, and feels syrupy and flat. Flavor is chewy and substantive, and is full of fruit and dull peach syrup. A little sweet, but not cloying. A definite alcohol tingle colors the finish, and there is a bite in the back of the throat in the aftertaste. Okay as barleywines go, but not a standout.

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

On tap at Anam Cara, Brookline, MA...

Lighter color than I expected, dark gold and clearish in appearance. Thin but lasting pale head. Laces in very complex threads. Aroma is slightly spicy, some sense of cardamon, but with lots of brown sugar. True to style, peppery hops accompany a vanilla-infused maltiness in the flavor. Not nearly as overwhelming as some "young" Barleywines can be, this one is interesting, well-balanced with a good mouthfeel -- and it won't annoy your canker sores. One of the most drinkable Barleywines I've encountered. The alcohol is also very well-hidden...

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.37/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Also from the Encore series, appears a bright clear copper large cream head leaves even bands of thin lacing with each sip lighter in color than most barleywines I come across interesting already. Aroma, such an interesting hop presence here with 80 IBUs it's not filled with the typical pine and flowers but earthy and herbal very rich honey, caramel, nutty with spicy sweetness alcohol and ripe fruit like apricots glazed in a high gravity brandy some vinous notes as well what a complex smell especially as it warms. Flavor wow alcohol burn that 10.3 abv isn't hidden so well but as the ripened fruit notes, alcohol, and hop edge collide something happens other than catching a buzz the fruit undertones bring syrupy sugar notes with the herbal spicy hops and mild dirt components a nice barleywine is formed the light alcohol burn on the palate is worth it after the flavors start to intermingle. Mouthfeel is syrupy with medium to fuller body the texture remains on the palate with an alcohol burn forming in the back of the throat that travels to the nares very interesting barleywine first high abv brew from Harpoon I've come across. Drinkability as the hop burps form and vision blurs, I kid but honestly their 10.3% seems concentrated definitely a very nice brew here though not as balanced as some but the aggressive qualities differ from other big ol' nasty b wines that tend to smack you in the face this is more like the white glove fisticuff smack but I'm still into that.

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

Pours with a fine creamy just off-white head. Clear amber/bronze in the glass featuring gentle carbonation. The nose is very fruity with hints of citrus and green apple. Tasting reveals flavors such as earthy maltiness, some light biscuit, and substantial bitter hoppiness followed by warming alcohol. Finishes long with slight wineyness, drying out a bit, and more throat warming alcohol. I'm going to cellar the other bottle to see if that alcohol heat will diminish over a year or two worth of aging. Hats off to Harpoon...and to sulldaddy for supplying this stuff.

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Photo of mikey711
3.48/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

2006 bottle

A: Light orange/amber color, cloudy, with only a faint psst when opened and a touch of head that sits on top.

S: It smells slightly like cardboard, but there is some sweet caramel and toffee notes. Also a touch of smokiness and leather

T: It is just about to be completely undrinkable. It reminds me of a very old bottle of fred. There is some leather notes, caramel sweetness, but it is just about to turn into teriaki

M: It is actually pretty smooth, with a good mellow creamy feel.

D: I am happy i split this bottle as i dont think much more than half it would be enjoyable

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Photo of bewareOFpenguin
4.95/5  rDev +29.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I would have to say, for me, this was the best Barleywine I have had to date. It was like a fine cognac, mellow and smooth. The ABV had no bite, but did let you know it was there. At room temperature, all the great "fruity" tastes pleasantly came forth. I intend to buy several of these for my wine rack. I even serve it in wine glasses.

Bravo Harpoon!

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Photo of edchicma
3.97/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark honey color, topped by a minimal head. head. Smell was yeasty, fruity with hop undertones. Flavor is very malty with definite alcohol notes, a definite sipper.. Mouthfeel is definitely full-bodied, rich. Drinkability is good for the styles and high abv.

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Photo of hoppymcgee
4.05/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12oz. Encore Series bottle dated 2006 into an Ommegang tulip glass.

A: Yellowish-orange color that glows and has plenty of carbonation left.

S: Surprisingly I still get a boozy whiff, with wheat, peanuts, and barley.

T: Fruity and nutty. This is unlike other barleywines in that it is not rich and caramelly.

M: Carbonation is still in full force. The overall feel of the beer is a little slick and oily, but on the thinner side.

D: The best feature of this beer. Although booze was evident in the nose, the taste does not give way to it. An easy beer to take down for 10.3%.

Overall, a beer that's still worth seeking out if you can find it. I love seeing beers age, and this one held up. Please note that this review most likely does not speak for the 22oz. bomber bottles of this beer (which are much older).

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.45/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a Snifter

A – Poured a very nice and hazy soft amber with a smallish, maybe one finger high of head sitting up on the top. A nice slow fade left behind almost nothing, except for a small touch of film across the top and some decent side glass presentation. Some carbonation could be seen, but not too much.

S – Aroma was full of alcohol, and almost came off to me as mead like. It had the very sweet honey like smell stuck on top of a really nice grain like base. A good amount of caramel present as well, as it warmed it started to give off some more hop like tones and become a tad bit thicker in smell also.

T – The flavor was ok, not bad at all, but I have to be honest and stick with just ok. There was no real profound flavor explosion like I was hoping for, and the hops were too muted. Now it is usually a good thing when they are muted in aged barley wines, but I would not expect it to be this sugary after not too much time. Very interesting flavor though, with hints of caramel and apricot hidden inside.

M – Very much syrup like. The carbonation seemed to all but disappear as you began to sip it. A thick syrup like consistency and a bit of a dull feel. There was some redeeming qualities though as the finish were very nice and the overall was not half bad.

D – Well it went down a lot easier then the 10%abv would have led one to believe. A very nice blend, especially once it warmed ensure that regular sips were common place. This was by no means a guzzler, but was a fine sipper nonetheless.

Overall this was not bad at all. I was actually impressed with how mellow it became after a few minutes and some warming. I have had much better barley wines, but this was far from bad. I would have like to have tried it fresh to compare, but this is still holing up very well.

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Photo of adowney523
3.43/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz brown bottle encore edition.

Pours a golden-amber with a thin white head.

Smells of citrus fruit particularly pineapple, grain, and alcohol.

Taste is of citrus fruits upfront with piney hops in the finish.

I thought this was drinkable, but a bit simple for a barleywine.

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Photo of Jwaks
2.94/5  rDev -23%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Serving 12oz bottle

Harpoon's american barelywine shows a translucent copper color with a ring of quickly dissapating foam and a light dose of carbonation.

Apple, pear, piney hops, light roasted malt and alcohol aromas play on the nose with hints of earthy spices and yeast.

Demi-sec apple, light malt, strong pine, spice box, dry earthy herbs and peppery alcohol flavors shine through on the initial taste and mid palate with a bit of tea tannins, cedar, slight acidic flavors and dry alcohol come through on the short clean finish. A bit thin and hallow on the finish, leaving a very dry sensation.

Light to medium bodied, a bit hard going down due to dryness, tannins and a slightly acidic body; closer to an imperial pale ale than a barelywine. This brew lacks a bit of structure and body along with the fruit and malt balance that make many great barleywines pleasant and drinkable.

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Photo of Seattleman
3.97/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Encore - bottled in 2006 and poured into a tulip.

Appearance: light cloudy copper with a quickly disappearing head.

Smell: brown sugar smell with a hint of floral.

Taste: malty with hints of hop that give it a slightly bitter aftertaste. Slight hint of fruit.

Mouthfeel: oily and boozy mouth feel.

Interesting and solid barleywine. Much more crisp and light than usual barelywines, making it more drinkable despite its high abv.

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Photo of Gusler
4.14/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer dispenses from the 22 ounce brown bottle an unclouded mahogany color, the head modest in size, frothy in texture and the color a winsome light tan with the residual lace a fine silk slip to cover the glass. Nose is sweet malt, light hit of hops and a pleasing bit of fusel alcohol, start is sweet, nice malt profile with the top middling in feel to the palate. Finish is moderate in its acidity, the hops spiteful in their bite, the aftertaste quite dry with a nice alcohol bite to seal it off, and nice representative to the “Barley Wine Style”.

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Photo of BuckSpin
4.07/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 11oz 11/06 Encore version bottled in a classic conical pint.

Here's a great beer story. While this Encore warms up, let me tell you.

Its March 2007. I was in a independent food/beer store and asked if they had any micros. The guy went back, checked and mentioned he had "yada yada yada Harpoon 100 Barrel yada yada yada...". My ears perked up. "Which one?" I asked. He goes back and brings out an UNOPENED case of Harpoon Encore #4 back from November of 06' !! I drew a deep breath. "How much?" I asked. When he basically offered the case at its individual bottle price, with my best poker face, paused a second and said "I'll take it." Then he asked "Would you like the other one?"

Other one?

Turns out he had TWO of these!!! So, I now have 47 bottles cellaring, one to enjoy and a great beer story to share as I enjoy.

Wonderfully deep, fruited nose. Peach, apricot, some cherry, even a little apple for sweetness. Echoes of honey, a lite spiciness, some esters, very pleasing. With some bloom grapefruit and oily pine rise. The spiciness grows and malts are more noticable as it warms. Surprisingly there is no obvious alcohol scent. Head was a 1/4" of mixed off-white foam that faded rather quickly to a see through film, but given the high ABV I'm not surprised nor going to hold it against it.

Its a vibrant, very clear, warm honey amber hue, barely brassy, a nice & slow cascade of carbonation twisting up from the depths.

Oh, this is light on the tongue...very surprising. I've never had a barleywine whisper so on the initial taste. Its semi-syrupy sweet up front, like dark honey. This is going down WAY too easy...gotta slow down! There's a lite malted presence, maybe some smoke, fruit like apricot or fresh peach that hasn't quite ripened yet. The hops rise on the palate as a bittersweet, oily grapefruit quality becomes noticable. I'm still drinking this too fast...this could be a dangerous beer. Some scotch-like qualities of soft orange and even a echo of milk chocolate sweetness remain on the throat as you swallow, and the alcohol, almost in a "Gotcha!" like reminder, rises up and is noticed finally, leaving a bittersweet, somewhat chewy, coating aftertaste reminiscent of a single malt.

This is an interesting interpretation of the genre and by far the easiest drinking barleywine I've ever tasted. Its surprisingly lite and dangerously easy to drink, with a nice scotch-like quality on the finish. Not the best barleywine I've had, but a interestingly good one. Not often you find one that you know you could drink in mid summer. In that I could have one of these a month for the next 4 years I'll find out! It will be interesting to see how this develops & grows.

Check it out if you can find some.

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Photo of PartyHatjo
4.04/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to michiganmiked for this tasty barleywine...

Appearance: Deep copper color...with a small, fluffy, off-white head that laces a bit down the glass.

Aroma: Quite complex. Slight alcohol presence. Hops are present and have herbal qualities in the aroma, but they aren't particularly strong in the nose. Malts definitely dominate the profile, with caramel being in the forefront. Slight diacetyl butteriness from the yeast is present.

Taste: Caramel is first to your taste buds, with a strong presence of butterscotch. Apples and pears seem to linger in the aftertaste. Hoppy bitterness balances the warming sweetness well. Alcohol becomes more prominent in the flavor as the beer warms.

Mouthfeel: A bit light for a barleywine...could use a stronger malt backbone.

Drinkability: Average, alcohol becomes more apparent as you get further down the bottle.

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Photo of auxiliary
4.08/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This was part of the encore series.

Appearance - Nice medium copper color with a small head at first, some lacing stuck to the glass.

Smell - Sweet smell, some alcohol, some hops.

Taste - sweet syrup at first and then goes down with a hit of alcohol.

Mouthfeel: light body

Drinkability: Not bad, first barelywine style and I liked it. It is a sipper, something to drink slow.
I am enjoying this series from Harpoon.

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Photo of Rastacouere
2.44/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Very clear amber body with basically no head. Aroma is full of annoying alcohol which burns the nose. If it was a pils, I’m sure it would be skunk, now it is far from a pilsner, but there’s to me that little something annoying and besides not much going on. The taste is very caramelic, immensely sweet, grossly sweet, full of alcohol. There may be a mild note of smoked ham, but seriously, this lacks dryness big time and is really short on the palate, besides the cloying sensation which doesn’t seem to want to go. Body is thin-medium. A very poor barley wine which disappoints me regardless of the low expectations I had.

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Photo of Zorro
4.08/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Quite a light colored Barley Wine, in the glass this is an orange gold colored beer with a remarkable clarity for the style. Large off white to light tan colored head.

The smell is sweet and fruity with quite a lot of citrus hop aroma. The scent is a bit spicy like FFF Dreadnaught but not quite that complex. There is a little pine and a little tropical fruit in the scent but it is quite subtle.

The flavor begins sweet and a little papaya and tea flavors. A little fruity and a little hoppy, there is a thin edge of citrus to this one. On the very knife-edge between flavorful and mild this needs a little more hops to be truly great, as it is it is on the mild side. Light hop flavor of pine, grapefruit and pineapple emerge on the edges, but they are just a little too subtle here.

The mouthfeel is quite light for the style.

Where this beer really shines is in the easy to drink department. As Barley Wines go this is dangerously easy to drink for its alcohol content. Well worth trying but not the pick of the litter.

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Photo of barleywinebrewer
3/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2006 encore edition. Saw this last night at the local store. Thought I'd try it since I like barleywines.

A - Tan bottles that look eerily clear for a barleywine when held up to a light. Pours a light orange / tan. light small head that quickly dissipates.

S - Some light hops aroma, a touch of yeast spiceness. Very little malt profile in the aroma.

T - barleywine light. Mild malts, a hint of pine / citrus hops.

M - very mild for a 10% abv. light bodied and smooth.

D - it's a nice enough beer but light for a barleywine. One or two is plenty at this abv.

Try one if you're curious. I prefer a more complex stronger malt and hops profile than this one offers.

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100 Barrel Series #04 - Barleywine from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
Beer rating: 3.82 out of 5 with 80 ratings