Tasting: November 3, 2011
Style: American Barleywine
The “Pops” began this journey a year ago — Today to be exact. It began with a meeting at the Cloverleaf Tavern in Caldwell. The fledgling idea was to bring a six pack of a beer we had never had but wanted to try. We would keep two bottles for ourselves and give two bottles each to the other pops. The swap would happen after we had a few at the bar. Over a snifter of Dogfish Head Olde School — we concocted the idea to start a website. I came up with a few names — the play on Dr. Seuss fit since we were all fathers of young kids.
The craft beer brotherhood continues to this day. I ran into Craig at the Wine & Beverage Depot the other day. I bought a four-pack of Olde School and he had a case of Founders Breakfast Stout. I gave him an Olde School — he gave me one of his precious stouts. John called me from Stew Leonards yesterday to ask if I wanted a bottle of 120 minute. Even our swaps get a little carried away with “bonus” and “friendship” beers. It truly is a craft-beer brotherhood.
So — full circle — we started with Old School — we’ll mark the occasion with a formal review of Olde School. The label is very interesting. Other than the retro artwork – which is pretty cool. They recommend taking bottle, seal it in a plastic bag and bury it in a two x two x three feet deep hole. But just remember where it’s buried and dig it up one year later. I guess, they are saying that it could stand a little age — or that it can age. At a whopping 15% ABV – it should certainly have some staying power. Check out my glossary, which includes a definition of barleywine Here
Pours a rich amber and the booze is easy to pick up on the nose. First sip reminds of a scotch on the rocks. The malt is simply high octane with fig/prune undertones. It’s a real sipper. Alcohol certainly warms the bones on a chilly November night. I’ll bury a bottle in my basement wine storage fridge and I’ll check back at the “Pops” second anniversary. For now, I’ll put it at 84 points.