The beer I’m reviewing today comes from one of the San Diego breweries that is known for the big San Diego-style hopping I’ve talked about before: Green Flash Brewing Barleywine Style Ale. This is a big, nearly 11% ABV beer that hits all the high marks for hopheads and strong beer, er, heads alike.
Our American-style Barleywine undergoes a three hour boil to intensify the caramel malts and the enormous Pacific Northwest hop charge. The result is a rich, estery brew with toffee notes and citrus hop flavors layered throughout. Enjoy this brew fresh today or lay it down for aging to see how the flavors of each vintage evolve.
Appearance: Pours the color of liquid caramel with a tan-orange head, nice and thick.
Smell: Signature San Diego hop nose, big and resiny, fronting a big boozy malt kick.
Taste: Big and bitter hops all over the place here, along with hot alcohol notes and a puckery-bitter punch. Sticky and sweet and as it warms, it loses some of the hot alcohol bite. Very big on the tongue, all around—typically San Diegan.
Mouthfeel: Full-bodied and sticky, with a cloying yet dry finish.
Overall: Nice big beer, definitely a sipper, and would benefit greatly from aging.