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A Year Ago: Peeking Back At 2007 Stone Old Guardian

2007 Stone's Old Guardian Barley Wine

***We’ve pulled this post out of the vault as part of our 1 year celebration. One year ago today, we were still meandering through our first few posts. Though we were rookies, Timperial’s brief review of Old Guardian sounds pretty good to me.***

Enjoyed on 12/7/2009
Brewery: Stone Brewing Co.

Location: Escondido, CA

Beer: Old Guardian (the OG)

Web: http://www.stonebrew.com

Presentation: 22 Fl. Oz. (650.6 ML) – Brown Glass Bottle

Vintage: 2007

Style: Barley Wine Style Ale

Barrel: N/A

ABV: 11.26%

IBU: 95

Hops: N/A

Malt: N/A

Vessel: Tulip

Recommended Serving Temp: 55 degrees

Notes from the bottle: “Ingredients: A whole buncha Barley, tons o’ Hops, Water & Yeast.” Also, an enormous amount of text from brewer Greg Koch that I’d rather not type. Interestingly, the content is mainly about the current (at the time it was written) building of the Stone Bistro. There is also mention of the “just over a hundred” Stone employees. The current homepage of the brewery states: “Happy Holidays from all 278 of us at Stone!” Yes, Stone is a force.

Bottled on: “Limited Early 2007 Release”

Flavor will continue to develop for some time to come.

Food Pairings: Dessert of any kind

Cheese Pairings: Pungent ones such as Blue, Gorgonzola, Limburger

Beer Advocate: A-

Rate Beer: 99 (3.97)

Timperialstout’s Notes:
I believe this is the last of the very few beers that I brought with me from Philadelphia when I moved here. It’s a bit sad that it will be gone after tonight, but it’s been refrigerated for far too long and I was really beginning to worry about its seal’s integrity. From what I’ve gathered, extended stays in the refrigerator can dry out the rubber on the inside of the bottle cap and cause the seal to be compromised. I’m not exactly sure how long that takes, but I’d rather not toy with the great OG.

No worries after tonight, I now have a real cellar for cellaring. Let’s get into it.

She pours a glowing amber, near tangerine hue. A stunning clarity and a surprisingly plump head for the age. A not entirely strong pour brings about a nice tan cap of varying sized bubbles that leaves a dense lacing on the glass. That’s from all the unfermented sugars. This one is really sticky, and that is just what I love. The scent is of salt water taffy I think. Maybe a bit of cotton candy, slightly metallic in there too… with hops just squeaking through in the end.

Nearly three years of aging and the hops have more presence than natural preservation, yeah… “tons o’ Hops” indeed. The mouthfeel is so smooth and delightful, honey coated. A slight prickle from the carbonation is more present just after the pour and while slightly colder. Hop bitterness is definitely there still. When you age a beer for several years you sort of expect that bitterness to fade, and though I surely love malty sweetness, beer perfection to me is malt and hop extremes coming together on the battlefield and bringing balance where it shouldn’t exist.

This OG’s malt vs. hop square-off is no doubt being won by team barley, but the hops are fighting for their lives. To me, that shows serious class, and brewing skill. It’s Stone, I’m not surprised. Alcohol burn is minimal. No off celery like flavors that I so often get from barley wines, especially the younger ones. It’s a great Monday night!

If you like Old Guardian, you should try…

Hair of the Dog – Doggie Claws
Victory – Old Horizontal
North Coast – Old Stock Ale

Disclaimer: This beer was purchased on my own with my own hard earned money at a local bottle shop and aged to perfection all on my own.

Preparing For Bacchanal: Dear Barleywine, a beer time capsule

February 26, 2010 Leave a comment

The Barleywine Bounty: 14 for 2014

We here at Beer Blotter have full hearts. Sure we do. We love that mushy stuff.

Over time we have accumulated a bevy of wonderful fans and colleagues in beer. We want to give each of them a chance to tell their wonderful stories and share their great love for the beer they wrap their hands around each evening.

In preparation of Beveridge Place Pub’s Barleywine Bacchanal, a couple of our most favored contributing friends wrote monologues to their beloved – barleywine.

The muse…..14 bottles of recently released Barleywine. The goal…..to lock them away in February 2010 – and open them in February 2014. After 4 years of aging, I just hope we are invited to the uncapping.

Lets see the list:

Anchor Brewing Old Foghorn

Sierra Nevade Bigfoot Ale

North Coast Old Stock Ale

Hair of the Dog Doggie Claws

Alaskan Barleywine Ale

Marin Brewing Old Dipsea

Lagunitas Old Gnarlywine

Stone Brewing Old Guardian

Green Flash Barleywine

Great Divide Old Ruffian

Deschutes Mirror Mirror

Midnight Sun Arctic Devil

Flying Dog Horn Dog

Victory Old Horizontal

Damn that looks good. So, lets lend an ear to our friends and see how inspired they were:

To be locked away in youth…

A Letter

Dear Barleywine,

I write you this day with hope that you find my words, within yourself merriment, and that these words touch you deeply with the purpose steeped upon them.  The seasons have changed, brought bitter airs and quelled growth – ever bare, and within myself spawned yearning for warmth.  An engulfing fever, submerged so to leave no piece of thy depth unwrapped.  Might we emblaze the year’s provisions? Not lest our souls, and heart be abandoned.  The steam of my exhale, the burn of my blood aches for infusion with your essence.  I thirst for the remedy that lies in you, O impassioned elixir.  Might we meet today and churn glowing red from this dead place?  Might our tangling force back the encroaching destitution?  This season I ask of your hand in melting this glacial encasing, and that together, each Winter passed, our allegiance advanced, tactics tempered, passion prospered.  Will we be merged now my sweet nectar, and age together with graceful longevity?

With all my allegiance,

Timperial

…brought to maturity in the cool, dark confines…

A Poem

To break a young stallion takes patience, and time

Strewn flora, trot leaves wake scented with herb and pine

A steady handler calms the wind’s stir, strives to bring sweetness forth

Within of the eye of our student, great tales of a deeper worth

A bond is born in one moment’s blind plunge, foreseen in dark tomb

By hand interwoven in mane, violence seized, froth of realized womb

Only to be reborn from this earth, maturation sees that glimmer sprout

Complexity developed within, to be shared and savored without doubt…

…a time capsule locked and buried...for warmth in the frostbitten air of Winter 2014.

Notes of a Beer Nerd: 2007 Stone Brewing Old Guardian

2007 Stone's Old Guardian Barley Wine

Enjoyed on 12/7/2009
Brewery: Stone Brewing Co.

Location: Escondido, CA

Beer: Old Guardian (the OG)

Web: http://www.stonebrew.com

Presentation: 22 Fl. Oz. (650.6 ML) – Brown Glass Bottle

Vintage: 2007

Style: Barley Wine Style Ale

Barrel: N/A

ABV: 11.26%

IBU: 95

Hops: N/A

Malt: N/A

Vessel: Tulip

Recommended Serving Temp: 55 degrees

Notes from the bottle: “Ingredients: A whole buncha Barley, tons o’ Hops, Water & Yeast.” Also, an enormous amount of text from brewer Greg Koch that I’d rather not type. Interestingly, the content is mainly about the current (at the time it was written) building of the Stone Bistro. There is also mention of the “just over a hundred” Stone employees. The current homepage of the brewery states: “Happy Holidays from all 278 of us at Stone!” Yes, Stone is a force.

Bottled on: “Limited Early 2007 Release”

Flavor will continue to develop for some time to come.

Food Pairings: Dessert of any kind

Cheese Pairings: Pungent ones such as Blue, Gorgonzola, Limburger

Beer Advocate: A-

Rate Beer: 99 (3.97)

Timperialstout’s Notes:
I believe this is the last of the very few beers that I brought with me from Philadelphia when I moved here. It’s a bit sad that it will be gone after tonight, but it’s been refrigerated for far too long and I was really beginning to worry about its seal’s integrity. From what I’ve gathered, extended stays in the refrigerator can dry out the rubber on the inside of the bottle cap and cause the seal to be compromised. I’m not exactly sure how long that takes, but I’d rather not toy with the great OG. No worries after tonight, I now have a real cellar for cellaring. Let’s get into it. She pours a glowing amber, near tangerine hue. A stunning clarity and a surprisingly plump head for the age. A not entirely strong pour brings about a nice tan cap of varying sized bubbles that leaves a dense lacing on the glass. That’s from all the unfermented sugars. This one is really sticky, and that is just what I love. The scent is of salt water taffy I think. Maybe a bit of cotton candy, slightly metallic in there too… with hops just squeaking through in the end. Nearly three years of aging and the hops have more presence than natural preservation, yeah… “tons o’ Hops” indeed. The mouthfeel is so smooth and delightful, honey coated. A slight prickle from the carbonation is more present just after the pour and while slightly colder. Hop bitterness is definitely there still. When you age a beer for several years you sort of expect that bitterness to fade, and though I surely love malty sweetness, beer perfection to me is malt and hop extremes coming together on the battlefield and bringing balance where it shouldn’t exist. This OG’s malt vs. hop square-off is no doubt being won by team barley, but the hops are fighting for their lives. To me, that shows serious class, and brewing skill. It’s Stone, I’m not surprised. Alcohol burn is minimal. No off celery like flavors that I so often get from barley wines, especially the younger ones. It’s a great Monday night!

If you like Old Guardian, you should try…

Hair of the Dog – Doggie Claws
Victory – Old Horizontal
North Coast – Old Stock Ale

Disclaimer: This beer was purchased on my own with my own hard earned money at a local bottle shop and aged to perfection all on my own.

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