The Brew Site

John Barleycorn Barleywine Style Ale

John Barleycorn is a "Certified Organic Barleywine Style Ale" brewed by Mad River Brewing Company. At 9.5% alcohol, it’s not as strong as some of these X-Treme Monsters being put out these days, but it’s still plenty strong for the style.

The label is cool; according to their site, it’s "created by local artist Janis Taylor, is a folksy woodcut based on the tale of John Barleycorn in verse." You can also view the rest of the series (they change each year).

Appearance: Dark brown, murky—like dark maple syrup. Almost no head when I poured.

Smell: Sweet, alcohol, plummy fruits, fig, raisin, brown sugar.

Taste: Strong alcohol (phenols?), coffee, caramel, dark berry, brandy, hint of vanilla and molasses.

Mouthfeel: Nice and syrupy thick, alcohol numbing, pleasantly warming.

Overall: A very decent barleywine with a lot of complex character happening there.

On BeerAdvocate, it scores 84 out of 100, with 91% approval. On RateBeer, it scores 3.48 out of 5 and is in their 82nd percentile.