By: Brooklyn Brewery
New York, United States
Style: English Barleywine, 10.80% (BA)
A bottle, I think the vintage is 2011 – it “expires” in 2014. Poured into a standard tulip.
Appearance: A dark copper, orange color. A little cloudy. It’s got a little head, but it’s run off to the sides. A light tan color to the head.
Smell: I get cherry, toffee, and a little citrus. A little alcohol feeling in my nose when I sniff too hard!
Taste: More subtle than I was expecting. Sour cherry, sweet brown sugar, and orange-chocolate. A little copper. It’s all very subtle! A fairly pronounced bitter at the end which is overwhelmed by the alcohol a little.
Mouthfeel: Heavy, as expected. Like whole milk with a little carbonation. The alcohol gives a big warming feeling. Somehow, despite all that warm alcohol, there is still a sticky coating left in my mouth.
Overall: This is a nice example of a barley-wine style ale. It’d work well with pairings and would be a really nice after-dinner offering for a winter dinner party – especially for people new to the style. As a stand-alone drink it’s not a show-stealer, which is what you need sometimes. I bought an individual bottle, though they had 4-packs too. I don’t think I regret my decision, but I don’t think if I got the 4-pack I would regret it either. It’s just a pleasant thing to drink.
Personally, I prefer the Solstice D’hiver by Dieu De Ciel, which I did get a 4-pack of. I regret not getting two of those…