Posted on November 16th, 2010
About the beer:
The first Barleywine I’ll be reviewing is an unusual one, coming all the way from Denmark by Mikkeller. This young company was founded in 2006 and has already received world-wide acclaim for their bold and innovative beers like the Big Worst barleywine. The Big Worst comes in a small 12.7 oz. bottle with a cork and a cage, making it look like a miniature bottle of champagne. While less than 13 ounces might not seem like much, what the beer lacks in volume it more than makes up for in strength, thanks to it’s 17.6% ABV. Needless to say Big Worst packs quite a wallop – I even had trouble finishing the half of the bottle I shared with fellow Beeriety writer Sarah.
In a nutshell: Mikkeller Big Worst is a rich, unusual barleywine that packs quite a punch. Be sure to share this one with a friend. 5 out of 5.
The strength of this beer is probably the first thing you’ll notice, but that’s not all it has to offer. The taste and flavor of the beer is unlike any other I’ve tried. Its smooth complexity somehow manages to hide much of the alcohol present from your taste buds. Although marked as a barleywine, in many ways the brew reminded me more of an old ale. While being tremendously sweet and rich, with notes of coffee and figs, there was little in the way of hops to balance it out, a quality most barleywines share.
This beer was an odd one, and something everyone should try at least once. Its intense strength and rich flavor make it an enjoyable brew, but not something I could drink everyday.
5 out of 5: Drinker’s Choice
What are you drinking? Try a Big Worst barleywine this week or explore on your own and tell us what your enjoying as a Beer of the Week. Tag your Twitter updates, Tumblr posts and Flickr photos of your Beer of the Week with the #mybeer hashtag to tell us what you’re drinking!