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Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2011
- Stone Brewing Co.
Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
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Stone Brewing Co.
Style | ABV
Limited (brewed once).
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.
No notes at this time.
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look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Enjoyed on tap at The Brilliant Blind Pig.
A fat finger of off-white foam rests atop a murky, burgundy and mahogany body. Good duration and lacing in the tulip. Beautiful nose, packed with malty, sweet aromas--butterscotch, berry, caramel, and some milk chocolate.
The taste certainly confirms the sweet aromas. Old Guardian is surprisingly sweet for a barleywine. Loaded with fruity malt, Old Guardian is a dangerous, seductive concoction. Bold, smooth, sweet, and potent, this is a distinct, innovative beer. Ample berry, sweet apple, grape, and chocolate adorn Old Guardian. Special stuff. Good effervescence, smooth, and sneaky in its strength despite the 12% ABV, this is one beer to beware of.
Stone was a brewery that was certainly on my radar, having enjoyed several of their wares a few years ago in Michigan. Yet, as it arrived with much advanced fanfare in Illinois, I wondered if I would enjoy their vast selection as much as I originally did. This proved to be no worry, for Stone has a magic touch, proving particularly creative and adept at myriad styles such as this, a tremendous barleywine. Old Guardian is simply, and truly, outstanding, and I am thoroughly impressed with it and the brewery, easily one of the ten best in the US.
Serving type: on-tap
05-27-2011 01:00:27 |
More by Gehrig
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Does life get any better... just put the family to bed, on a cold winter's night, and a world-class barleywine in hand? ....and Sportscenter!
Aromas of this magnificent beer hold a complex matrix of deeply caramelized malts, citrus and resiny hops, and a true malted milk bready character that declares a masculine stature but with refinement and grace.
Malty rich flavors give a bold array of caramel, buttered toast, molasass, and brown sugars. Mild bready flavors allow for the reminescent of toast and honey. Hoppy flavors combat with early citrus, turn pine, turn resiny for a clean bitter finish. There's an aura about this beer that commands respect with its boldness and control, but its restraint and deliberacy shows a sense of elegance and regal that's not to be overlooked. When I taste this beer, it's not about picking apart the individual flavors, but rather about describing the magical qualities of the beer that only the great ones exhibit. For this one, it's the balance and richness of malt and hops- all with the yeasty microbiology steering the wheels.
A creamy, malty upstart holds onto that dense textrue until very late. While citrus flavor turns pithy bitter, then grassy/resiny in the finish; it's not until very late where the beer finally turns the corner toward semi-dryness and a medium-toasty finish. Still, remaining savory and succulent 'til the very end. A return of toffee malt and citrus return in aftertaste, inviting the next sip way sooner than it should.
Delicious and challenging from start unitl finish, this beer is way more palatable and digestible than a 12%er should be. Stone hits homeruns, time after time with this beer!
Serving type: bottle
02-23-2011 04:57:35 |
More by BEERchitect
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5
pours a lovely ruby, that is somewhat hazy. a finger of even, light almond head with nice retention and minimal spotty lacing.
smell: super fresh. there is a war going on between the hops, malt and alcohol armies. lets say its the year 1969. the malt flavor is the south vietnamese, the hop flavor is the north vietnamese and the alchohol is like america: once a brute force, that is slowly getting defeated and will soon diminish and leave the others to settle it. or is it more like a yummy world war 3 in my mouth?
taste: big fat honking man meat slaps you in the grill with west coast hops. youre getting dp'ed by flavor, you look up, only to be showered in the juices of brewing success!!
but seriously, this blend of light caramel flavored malts, classic west coast citrus hop varieties and subtle alcohol makes my day, and rivals almost all other barleywines i have tried to date.
Serving type: bottle
03-12-2011 02:40:12 |
More by northaustin
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
(I'm going to apologize a little for this being so long. But this is honestly one of my favorite beers so, try to understand and hopefully enjoy the review too! If you'd like the short version please check out my ASTMO, towards the bottom! Cheers.)
Hey, now. Look at what we've got here, another offering from Stone's Brewery. It's their Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale, the 2011 classic release.
On the pour, you can tell this brew is big and heavy! Old Guardian is a beautiful dark golden-amber color and is deliciously cloudy. From a gentle pour this beer gathers a really thick head so be careful--this thing could easily runneth over if you get even a little bit ahead of yourself!
From that nice thick head you get two things. The first is of course is that nice bustling bouquet boasting all of the maltiness of this brew. And as a perk you get a nice bit of Belgium lace—a nice aesthetic to please the eyes complimenting your happy nose.
The aroma of this beer is quite something too. What this brew provides should be called nothing short of malt heaven! Honestly, it’s like being in a grain silo. And the best part is, it’s not compromised by any of the piney, resinous hop smells most beers use to balance their malt-heavy brews. I’m pleased to say that this winning recipe follows through just the same with the taste!
On the first sip, well, there it is. This brew is huge! They must use about three pounds of malt per bottle—it’s truly intense.
The taste of this beer is really everything, so, I’m going to spend some time breaking it down as best I can. At the front end of this beer, it has a really sweet taste from all the lighter and medium roasted malts. The brew, after a second of sitting on your palate, levels off though, thanks to the slight—but welcome—hop taste and the hints at some darker roasted malts.
To speak to this brew’s mouthfeel, well, I don’t know if it’s just a bit distracting with the intense taste or if the mouthfeel itself is actually a little lackluster but at very least I can say it is a fitting mouthfeel that goes unnoticed as everything else in this brew is being knocked out of the park—and that’s not necessarily a bad thing! I will say that I am proud of Stone for making a 12% ABV brew that doesn’t make my eyes cross on every sip. I didn’t honestly even notice that this brew had such a high ABV until I was finishing off the bottle. You can guess how I noticed…
A: The appearance of this brew is great. You know exactly what you’re getting into from the pour. It’s dark. It’s a bit red. It’s a little gold. You’re getting a load of flavor and an equal amount of booze and each factor perfectly complements the other!
S: The smell of this beer is really spectacular. It smells like you’re in a grain silo, haha. Really, this brew kicks maltiness up to new heights, so, I say that jokingly with a big bit of truth in there too.
T: The taste of this beer is the best part. This brew has an unexpected level of sweetness—all from malt—and Stone has dared to leave it be and not compromise it with unnecessary hoppiness. I give ‘em a pat on the back for that…
M: Mouthfeel is the only underwhelming aspect of this brew. It is good in so far as it does not detract from the beer in any way but it doesn’t have anything necessarily ‘going’ for it in any special way. Again, this isn’t a bad thing but it’s impossible to say one way or another when it doesn’t stand out… It should not be seen as a detracting factor, though.
O: Well, we have another offering from Stone Brewery that really knocks it out of the park. This is a bit daring as they do not muddy up the sweet, sweet malty waters with hops but that’s what they made their Belgo Barley Wine Style Ale for, after all! So I definitely have to say, go for it with this one… you will not be sorry you did. This beer capitalizes on doing what most brewers apparently are too afraid to do—make a big, big brew with a ton of malt that is not necessarily balanced; and, well, I say kudos to them!
Serving type: bottle
03-29-2012 04:15:22 |
More by mayorwalda
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Poured into a Snifter.
A:Candy apple red. With enough light, it embraces the shape of a Candy Apple inside my sniffer glass.
S:If alcohol was a candy it would be a caramel. Melted sublimely into an indefectible liquid that was meant for every labored enthusiast.
T:Caramelized malts, with a piney Pulp Fiction Twist.
M:Barley best savored under cold heat.
O:An experience to be dealt with in a mature manner.
Serving type: bottle
04-18-2011 07:24:17 |
More by ineva
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
Poured brom a 650ml into my Old Guardian glass.
Pours a clear reddish amber with a light tan 3 1/2 finger head that leaves plenty of attractive lacing.
I get over-ripe citrus, sweet caramelly malt and alcohol in the nose. A hint of honey. A bit of Belgian-like barnyard scent.
Very sweet caramel malts, a taste of alcohol and long lasting bitter hops.
Rather thin mouthfeel for the style. A plus in my book. Lightly syrupy with a nice bite from the alcohol.
I didn't realize it at first, but this was a fortuitous pick for my 100th review.
The relatively light body combined with the excellent balance between the rather sweet malts and the bitter hops, along with the unsurpassed buzz, makes the Old Guardian series my all-time favorite brew, along with Firestone 13.
Serving type: bottle
03-05-2011 07:45:44 |
More by obywan59
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Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2011 from Stone Brewing Co.
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