2011 Big Beer and Barleywine Festival Recap

Posted: March 6, 2011 by bacchation in Beer, Festival
Tags: , , , ,

Two days of tasting some of the strongest beers that are made not only sounded like a lot of fun, but also turned out to be so. Lynn, Scott and I hit up the first day and were able to sample about 8 beers, and then I returned on Sunday to hit a few more. The problem with beers that average between 10 and 12 percent, is that it is hard to really drink more than a couple of them at a time and remain upright.


Go Beavs and a special thanks to the mysterious photobomber for infusing some energy into the photo.

Thanks to The Lucky Labrador for holding this event, now in its second year. There were close to 60 different kegs there, with around 30 on tap at a time, which meant unfortunately that we were not able tio properly time it to get all of the beers we wanted to try, but there was never a lack of new brews to check out.

The highlights of the weekend were Rock Bottom’s 2008 Bourbon Barrel Aged Stout, Oakshire’s 2009 Very Ill Tempered Gnome, and Boulder Beer Company’s 2010 Killer Penguin, all three of which got a group consensus score of a 5.

But aren’t barleywines expensive? Was this weekend a wallet destroyer? Here is the breakdown for those that are interested.

Entry was free, which was nice since Lynn was mostly our designated driver, many of these sorts of events have a 5 or 10 dollar entry fee just to step inside. For those that were drinking, $9.00 bought you a tasting glass (actual glass, nice!) and 2 tickets, and then additional tastes were 2 dollars per pour of approximately 4 ounces each. The only beer that didn’t cost one ticket was Emelisse’s Netherlands B-Wine which we didn’t try. At many other festivals you are charged 2, 3, or even 4 tickets per drink for some beers, so again, great value.

Here is the breakdown of all of the beers that we sampled over the two days… had we had time to go back for a third day, or if we were able to leave and come back (so we had time to sober up a bit between sessions) there were another half dozen or so we wanted to try, but in the world of strong ales and barleywines, you really just do the best you can and hope to wake up the next day without a headache.

Boulder Beer Co. 2010 Killer Penguin – 5

Buckbean 2009 Very Noddy – 4
Deschutes 2009 Mirror Mirror – 3
Fish Tail 2009 Monkfish – 3
Flying Dog 2009 Horn Dog – 2
Hopworks 2008 Floggin Noggin – 4
Lagunitas 2009 Gnarley Wine – 3
Laughing Dog 2009 Dogfather – 2
Laurelwood 2008 Old Reliable – 4
Lucky Lab 2007 Old Yeller – 4
Lucky Lab 2010 Old Yeller – 2
Lucky Lab 2009 Barrel Aged Old Yeller – 3
Lucky Lab 2009 Son of Old Yeller – 4
Oakshire 2009 Very Ill Tempered Gnome – 5
Oakshire 2010 Very Ill Tempered Gnome – 4
Rock Bottom 2008 Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Stout – 5
Rogue 2008 Old Crustacean – 4
Sierra Nevada 2009 Bigfoot – 4
Three Creeks 2009 Rudolph – 3
Upright 2009 Just Another Strong Ale – 2
Walking Man 2009 Old Stumblefoot – 3
Widmer 2009 CXI Collaborator – 4
Widmer 2008 Old Embalmer – 4

Visit Lucky Labrador!

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