Sucaba/Barleywine Question

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by alysmith4, Mar 26, 2013.

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  1. alysmith4

    alysmith4 Initiate (0) Feb 11, 2005 District of Columbia

    I finally able to try Firestone Walker's Sucaba last night, and loved it. (After "enjoying" enough of it, I was calling it "chupacabra" by the end of the night!)

    Anyway, before this, I thought I hated barleywines. My question is this: is Sucaba a good example of a barleywine, or is it just in a category of it's own? I know the best way to get an answer would be to try some other examples, but I don't want to start buying a bunch of barleywines only to find out I still don't like them.

    What say you?
    1up likes this.
  2. Andygirl

    Andygirl Initiate (0) Jan 3, 2013 Michigan

    It's an English Barleywine. American Barleywines are hoppier. I also love Sucaba. :wink:
  3. Ravenacht

    Ravenacht Aspirant (201) Aug 10, 2012 Florida
    Beer Trader

    It is one of the best examples of an English Barleywine I have had also...simply outstanding.
  4. geocool

    geocool Initiate (175) Jun 21, 2006 Massachusetts

    It definitely opened my eyes to a style I had previously dismissed. If there are others in its class I'd definitely like to know about it too.
    AnotherImperial and alysmith4 like this.
  5. OddNotion

    OddNotion Devotee (478) Nov 1, 2009 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    It is also barrel aged which is not the case for most barleywines.
  6. 1up

    1up Disciple (361) Mar 5, 2013 District of Columbia

    Why were you calling it goatsucker? Just curious :slight_smile:
    alysmith4 likes this.
  7. Greywulfken

    Greywulfken Poo-Bah (3,335) Aug 25, 2010 New York
    Beer Trader

    I am curious which barleywines you had that you didn't like...

    I concur that Sucaba is a superior barleywine of the sweet (English) kind. I have it as my highest rated barleywine of either kind, just barely ahead of the highly acclaimed King Henry.
    SubpoenaDeuces and alysmith4 like this.
  8. 1up

    1up Disciple (361) Mar 5, 2013 District of Columbia

    King Henry, Leon, Many "Old Ales" (like Old Stock Ale, Curmudgeon, Hibernation). Anything labeled Old Ale or English Barleywine usually.
    alysmith4 likes this.
  9. ao125

    ao125 Initiate (0) Dec 1, 2010 Virginia

    Sucaba, BBA Below Decks from Heavy Seas, Arctic Devil from Midnight Sun, BBA Devil's Milk from DuClaw, BBA Reserve Ale #3 from Cricket Hill...

    Arctic Devil is like crack.
  10. willbm3

    willbm3 Initiate (0) Feb 19, 2010 Massachusetts

    I'm a Barleywine noob as well, but Sucaba is barrel aged which imparts alot of non-traditional Barleywine flavors. Also, it fucking rocks.

    Try SN Bigfoot. You can probably get it for relatively cheap so if you hate it you aren't out alot of $
    Premo88, CloudStrife and alysmith4 like this.
  11. geocool

    geocool Initiate (175) Jun 21, 2006 Massachusetts

    So you're saying that "anything labeled Old Ale or English Barleywine" is in the same class as Sucaba? Disagree.
  12. claaark13

    claaark13 Zealot (504) Nov 29, 2007 Indiana
    Beer Trader

    I second these statements.
  13. Duff27

    Duff27 Poo-Bah (1,780) Feb 10, 2010 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    Abacus/Sucaba are middle of the road BA English Barleywines. If you liked it then you should start exploring more of the style.
    alysmith4 likes this.
  14. 1up

    1up Disciple (361) Mar 5, 2013 District of Columbia

    Whoops, I replied to the wrong message. More the category Sucaba is in, not the class.
    TwelveOunces likes this.
  15. HopsintheSack

    HopsintheSack Devotee (447) Apr 17, 2012 California
    Beer Trader

    Isn't Bigfoot more of an American style? I didn't care for it as much as Sucaba.
    jgluck and MetalMountainMastiff like this.
  16. Greywulfken

    Greywulfken Poo-Bah (3,335) Aug 25, 2010 New York
    Beer Trader

    I am getting some of that crack tomorrow.
    ao125 likes this.
  17. OddNotion

    OddNotion Devotee (478) Nov 1, 2009 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    Yes, Bigfoot is an example of an American Barleywine.
  18. ao125

    ao125 Initiate (0) Dec 1, 2010 Virginia

    Like x1000.
  19. Greywulfken

    Greywulfken Poo-Bah (3,335) Aug 25, 2010 New York
    Beer Trader

    Yes, Bigfoot is an American style barleywine.

    Edit: @OddNotion: missed it by that much!
  20. sukwonee

    sukwonee Crusader (740) Dec 13, 2011 Washington
    Beer Trader

    If you enjoy Sucaba, you will also enjoy Mother of All Storms, BA Old Ruffian, BA Hi-Fi Rye, Arctic Devil, CW BBBW (with about a year on it), and I also hear King Henry is a good comparable - I have never tried a bottle of it yet though.
    alysmith4 likes this.
  21. jmgrub

    jmgrub Initiate (0) Nov 20, 2010 California

    Try Pretty Things Our Finest Regards. For my money, it's the best non-BA English (edit: English-STYLE) barleywine I've had. And congratulations, you have just found the best beer style on earth.
  22. BottleCaps80

    BottleCaps80 Zealot (595) Jan 12, 2013 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    Definitely agree with Our Finest Regards from Pretty Things. Fantastic beer!

    Central Waters Barrel Aged Barleywine is amazing too.
  23. jtdolla911

    jtdolla911 Initiate (0) Nov 18, 2011 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    Anything by JW Lees. An English company that a makes a fantastic English Barleywine. Either go with the Harvest Ale or any of the barrel aged stuff. The bottles might give you a bit of sticker shock, but it is worth it. The best barleywine, american or.english that ive had. The bros rate it a perfect 100 and i agree with that. Aside from that, Nogne 0 "100" and Djaevlebryg Old Mephisto are also really good.
    jaminjohnson, mdvatab and alysmith4 like this.
  24. jmgrub

    jmgrub Initiate (0) Nov 20, 2010 California

    I need to amend my previous post-just remembered that Xyauyu series, JW Lees, and Thomas Hardy's all rank above Our Finest Regards for me. You should give all of these a try (except Xyauyu-it was a bit rich for my blood at $40/500ml until I had been in the barleywine game for a while).
    alysmith4 likes this.
  25. Zhiguli

    Zhiguli Aspirant (245) Jul 12, 2012 California

    I adore Abacus (opened 2 of the current bottles already) and have some stocked away. What others similar beers are there that are better? ???? I've had mother of all storms too.
    thanks in advance
  26. JamesShoemaker

    JamesShoemaker Initiate (0) Sep 21, 2012 Michigan
    Beer Trader

    Very good beer, but substantially different from other EBWs, even BA ones.
    alysmith4 likes this.
  27. Rainier

    Rainier Initiate (0) Dec 20, 2012 California

    Sucaba is so good... For $15 it's very affordable for a once a month thing...
    alysmith4 likes this.
  28. Brew33

    Brew33 Crusader (748) Oct 24, 2007 Ohio
    Beer Trader

    Sucuba is a great beer. That being said, it's incredibly barrel forward. Maybe try some non-barrel aged English Style Barleywines to get a better feel for the style. I certainly don't think "Sucuba" when I think of the style.
    alysmith4 likes this.
  29. ao125

    ao125 Initiate (0) Dec 1, 2010 Virginia

    I can only hope the new owners of the Thomas Hardy brand will make a BBA version.
  30. DarthGuitarHero

    DarthGuitarHero Devotee (443) Jan 15, 2011 Minnesota

    Be sure to try Cockeyed Cooper. It's a barrel-aged, malt-forward American-style barleywine, but to me it is very similar to Sucaba.
  31. Gotti311

    Gotti311 Crusader (771) Mar 22, 2009 Wisconsin
    Beer Trader

    Try and get someone in WI to trade you for some CW BBBW. I had that and Arctic Devil on back to back weekends and while both were truly mind blowing, I favored the CW version by a pinch.

    Non-BA BW that I have really enjoyed this year are AleSmith Old Numbskull and Rogue Old Crustacean (it was a 2010 bottle though)
    Angst and alysmith4 like this.
  32. DrStiffington

    DrStiffington Meyvn (1,083) Oct 27, 2010 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    Sucaba is by far my favorite barley wine so far. If it's middle of the road, what do you recommend?
    FriarTuckInLuck and fujindemon74 like this.
  33. GregSVT

    GregSVT Savant (905) Jul 1, 2009 Texas
    Beer Trader

    That beer was nowhere near as complex and tasty as Abacus. I was pretty dissapointed by that one.

    If you want good English Barlewines try MoaS, King Henry, Naked Evil, or Bligh's.
    2beerdogs, chugalug06 and alysmith4 like this.
  34. SirBottlecap

    SirBottlecap Initiate (0) Jan 28, 2013 California

    You started out on top. Now you can quit drinking beer and move on to hard lemonade.
  35. phooky

    phooky Aspirant (209) Jan 23, 2010 New York

    Weyerbacher Insanity is the closest thing I've had to Sucuba, and damn good too.
    Pick it up if you can find it, you'll love it if you liked Sucuba.
  36. vacax

    vacax Initiate (0) Jun 3, 2008 California
    Beer Trader

    Highwater Old and in the Way is a great example. A portion of it is barrel aged, Deschutes style.
    alysmith4 likes this.
  37. fujindemon74

    fujindemon74 Initiate (0) Nov 7, 2012 Pennsylvania

    FriarTuckInLuck and mattsander like this.
  38. beerinNV

    beerinNV Initiate (0) Jan 3, 2012 Nevada

    Eladio Vuente?
    AnotherImperial likes this.
  39. Duff27

    Duff27 Poo-Bah (1,780) Feb 10, 2010 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    While not an English Barleywine, I don't know if it gets any better for my money than the newest release of Central Waters Bourbon Barrel Barleywine.

    Also, once you've had King Henry, it's all downhill. But I'd love to be proved wrong!
  40. kodt

    kodt Zealot (514) Mar 6, 2013 Illinois

    You can't exactly go out and pick up a King Henry though...
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